The Paris Eagles traveled to West Fork Friday night to face the Tigers.
Both teams were looking for their first victory on the season.
For Paris, the defense was much improved, only allowing one score on the evening. However, West Fork got on the board in the first period with an interception return for a score. Their two-point conversion attempt failed, and they had a 6-0 lead. Paris answered, moving the ball steadily on the ground before Blaise Woods took in a score from four yards out, and the Kong Yang kick gave the Eagles a 7-6 lead.
Neither team would score in the second quarter, and the game became chippy, with the team eventually totaling 10 personal foul penalties on the evening, four from Paris and six from West Fork. In the second quarter, Paris took a blow they had little answer for. Quarterback George Poole went down with injury and spent the rest of the evening on the bench with an ice wrap on his knee. Paris did not have a second or third string available, with one player ineligible and another injured a few weeks earlier. For the rest of the evening, the snap would go directly to Blaise Woods in the backfield.
In the third quarter, West Fork got their only offensive score of the evening. It did not look good for the Eagles, but Blaise Woods left a trail of bodies down the field, and Paris put a score on the board and took a 13-12 lead. Paris went for two to try and extend the lead to three, but the attempt came up just short. The score would stay right there, and with just over a minute to go, Paris held West Fork out of the end zone after they had first and ten at the 11-yard line.
And this is where everything went off the rails.
Paris ran a play on first down, and West Fork took their final timeout. On second down, there was a whistle for a false start, backing Paris up. West Fork kept jumping the line and clapping, the signal the Eagles use to snap the ball. As soon as the ball was snapped the whistles blew. Woods simply took a knee. The play had been blown dead.
Initially, the call was unclear, but the eventual outcome was a call for not having enough players on the line of scrimmage. While the officials sorted things out, including the spot of the ball, which would have been half the distance, Coach Clark called timeout to get his guys focused. As they returned to the field, the ball was moved back to the one-yard line and the down was changed to third down. The explanation was that the penalty was declined and they took the spot of the kneel down, both improper enforcement for the play that had been blown dead at the snap. Eventually, Paris facing fourth down with four seconds on the clock back up to their own goal. There was time on the clock due to the number of stoppages for the crew to discuss down and distance. Paris lined up to punt, and a West Fork defender got a hand on the kick, knocking the ball out of the end zone for the most improbable of outcomes as the Eagles lost on a blocked punt safety.
The Eagles return home Friday night to face Greenland on Senior Night at Eagle Stadium.