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by David Allen
RALEIGH — The Wake Forest Cougars faced off against the Enloe Eagles Friday night in what ended up being a blow out win for the Cougars, the final score was 45-13.
The Cougars quickly took the lead about halfway into the first quarter, including a touchdown by quarterback Mack Moore who pushed it to 13-0.
Enloe attempted to respond but fumbled on their own 23-yard line, giving the Cougars excellent position to make another touchdown. Wake Forest capitalized and the score broadened to 20-0.
On their next possession, Enloe was unable to complete a third down conversion, and Wake Forest continued to rack up points after they recovered a dropped punt by the Eagles.
Moore used a shovel pass to junior running back Bryce Love to escape pressure in the pocket, Love got into the end zone on that run although the Cougars again were unable to get the extra point.
When Enloe received the kick off, which resulted in a touchback, they were not able to advance. Wake Forest’s senior defensive end Jalen Thorpe hauled in a tipped pass by sophomore defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence which lead to another touchdown for the Cougars by Raheem Wise. The score moved to 39-0 after a blocked extra point attempt.
Another attempt by Enloe to at least get on the score board was stopped when freshman Xavier Gill sacked Enloe’s quarterback and then time in the half ran out.
Coming back from the break, the Eagles attempted another push down the field but their offense ground to a halt after senior Javon Felder nearly knocked the ball out of Eagles quarterback Dwayne Purnell’s hands. Purnell , however, was called down before the ball popped loose. He then threw two incomplete passes that forced the Eagles to punt.
Wake Forest returned to the field on the their own 32-yard line but because of a holding foul and being unable to convert the third down, they found themselves forced to punt.
Recovering the ball and starting on the Cougars 48-yard line, Enloe was able to scramble into the end zone in just two plays, with a 52-yard pass to Camron Lewis. The successful PAT put Enloe on the board and the score became 39-7.
The Cougars received their first kickoff off of the night and started on their own 30-yard line. Unfortunately, their first play resulted in a fumble that the Eagles recovered.
Enloe tried to bring the score within a closer margin. With a pass to Roy Garris, the Eagles moved to the 9-yard line. De’Jon Bosley then ran it to the 5, and that is where their luck ran out.
When Purnell went to hand off the ball for a run up the middle, Wake Forest’s defense broke through Enloe’s line and caused a fumble that the Cougars recovered.
Enloe held Wake Forest on the Cougars’ own 9-yard line, forcing them to punt having only gained 15-yards.
The Eagles had another chance at the end zone but were only able to make it as far as the 36 before being charged with a false start and then Purnell was sacked in the back field by Thorpe and Charlie Constantino.
The fourth quarter began with a promising beginning for the Eagles, as they pushed down the field with determination. They got to Wake Forest’s 9-yard line but the Cougars intercepted the ball in the end zone for a touchback.
In spite of two encroachment penalties and an illegal substitution against the, Wake Forest’s Shy’heem Mitchell made a 57-yard touchdown bringing the score to 45-7.
The game wasn’t quite over for the Eagles. After pushing down to the 1-yard line, Purnell ran a keeper play for a score, bringing the final tally to 45-13 after a failed PAT.
“Our team has never quit, and tonight is a perfect example of that,” said head Enloe coach Mike Massey. “Even though they were down, they wanted to keep fighting and they wanted to produce. I and my coaching staff are very proud of them.”
The Cougars moved to 8-3 overall and Enloe remained winless at 0-1.
Wake Forest picked up a No. 12 seed and will travel to Panther Creek in Cary Friday for the first round of state playoffs. The Cougars beat the Catamounts 28-14 in their season opener. Since then, Panther Creek has suffered only one other loss, coming into the playoffs at 9-2.
The game begins at 7:30 p.m.