Skyhawks finish season on a high note
Published 12:44 pm Monday, November 13, 2023
The Point Skyhawks finished off the season on a high note as they defeated St. Andrews 14-0 at home.
A win is a win, but it was a very up-and-down performance for Point. The Skyhawks struggled to move the ball consistently on the offensive side, and quarterback play was again an issue.
“I was actually very disappointed,” Point coach Trevor Zeiders said. “Didn’t feel like we had the energy that I would have liked. I don’t know that we were as focused as we could have been.”
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Point found early momentum in the game as Barry Finley recovered a fumble on the first play from scrimmage. A few plays later, Samir Wylie connected with Kareem Keye on a 14-yard touchdown pass.
The rest of the first half was a defensive slugfest. The Skyhawks had a few chances to add points on the board in the first half, but a blocked field goal and a fumble near the red zone kept the score at 7-0.
The Skyhawks’ struggles in the red zone continued in the second half. On the opening drive, Jordan McCall intercepted Wylie’s pass in the end zone. After the defense forced a turnover on downs, Austin Adcock fumbled a snap on the opposing six-yard line.
As it has in every win this season, Point’s defense continued to step up. On the ensuing drive, Shakwan Bickley intercepted Darius Holly’s pass and set the Skyhawks up in the red zone. Isaac Jones capitalized on that field position with a two-yard rushing touchdown. Point took a 14-0 lead with 1:19 left in the third quarter after the extra point.
“We stepped up,” Zeiders said. “We’ve been there all year defensively. The four games that we won, the defense was probably the main reason we won those as well.”
Turnovers hampered the Skyhawks on offense throughout the fourth quarter. A muffed punt by Brandon Washington gave the Knights the ball at Point’s 36-yard line. The defense forced a turnover on downs, but the ensuing drive ended with a missed 17-yard field goal.
The Skyhawks forced another turnover on downs on the next drive. On the ensuing drive, Adcock’s pass was intercepted by Lavarius Heath-Lewis in the end zone.
The win ensured that Point finished with a 4-7 record for the second consecutive season. The coaching staff is left with several things to work on in the offseason on the offensive side.
The Skyhawks struggled to find any consistency in the run game or in the passing game this season.
“It all comes down to execution for us,” Zeiders said. “I don’t know how many receivers we had running wide open today, they just couldn’t put the ball on them. We’ve got to get better at running the football. We’ve got to become more aggressive in our mentality and how we attack it.”
Five different quarterbacks attempted passes for Point this season. All but one of those quarterbacks are set to return next season. Wylie and Adcock both had an opportunity to prove themselves on Saturday. Adcock completed eight of his 16 passing attempts for 100 yards, one touchdown, an interception and a fumble. Wylie completed eight of his 23 attempts for 71 yards, one touchdown and an interception.
“Austin threw the ball better when he finally got in,” Zeiders said. “There were multiple opportunities there for Samir, but we didn’t put the ball where it needed to be placed. That’s part of the frustration.”
Finishing 4-7 in back-to-back season gives the Skyhawks a base to work on moving forward. Point held a lead in three of its last five games, and there were chances for Point to have a much better record. Zeirders and the rest of the coaching staff are looking forward to improving on that base this offseason.
“I feel like there’s a good basis,” Zeiders said. “This to me is the base of where every year should be. We shouldn’t be any worse than 4-7 any given year. We’ve got to learn to finish better.”