Manassas proved to be a historic battle ground for the Clarke County Eagles as their string of consecutive wins came to end Friday night with a loss to the Manassas Park Cougars 21-14. The three-time defending Bull Run District champion Eagles lost in the last minute of the game, leaving them with their first regular season defeat in three years.
The battle opened with both teams driving the field for touchdowns setting the stage for another high scoring game, but it was not to be. The Eagles put together a long drive on their second possession, but a fumble by #1 Grant Shaw ended the drive and took the steam out of the Eagle offense. The Cougars were unable to capitalize on the turnover and were forced to punt the ball away 2 minutes into the second quarter. As the Eagles took possession again, the Cougar defense turned up the heat shutting down the Eagles and forcing them 3 and out. A short punt left the Cougars in ideal scoring position at the Eagle 29 yard line. After a seven play drive the Eagles defense held their ground forcing a field goal attempt by the Cougars which went wide left. The Eagles took over on the twenty but could not sustain a drive punting the ball away with 2:07 left in the half. In the closing minutes of the first half, Manassas Park marched the ball down the field, but the drive was defused by an interception by #46 Tyler Shiley on the 14 yard line to end the half.
The third quarter would be dominated by the Cougars. Their opening drive would consume almost 8 minutes off the clock and take them down to the Eagle 17. Pressed into their own territory, the Clarke County defense made their stand and scuttled the drive stopping the Cougars on a 4th down conversion attempt.
On offense, the Eagles fizzled in the 3rd quarter going three and out and managing only 2 yards in total offense.
The Cougars next possession would carry into the 4th quarter and end in a 17 yard touchdown pass to take the lead 14-7 with 8:32 left in the game. Hoping to catch the Eagles off-guard the Cougars attempted an onside kick but failed to recover and the Eagles took over at their own 42.
The pressure revived the Eagle offense. Six plays later they would tie the game with a 27 yard touchdown run by #22 Ron Anderson with 5:28 left in the game. With the score tied and the clock winding down, the Cougars would answer back driving the field in 13 plays. Cougars quarterback Nick Kolb capped off the drive carrying the ball in to take the lead 21-14 with 1:04 left in the game.
The Eagles would have one more opportunity to score as they returned the Cougar kickoff to their own 49 yard line. The Eagles took to the air for the final drive but were unable to connect ending the game with a Cougar interception.
With the loss, the Eagles drop to (8-1, 2-1). The win puts Manassas Park (6-2, 2-0) into a first-place tie with Madison County in the Bull Run District standings.
The Eagles have a bye next week but will face Madison at home on November 12th at 7:30 PM.