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Blue Devils steamroll Coffeeville to retain Railroad trophy

By Griffin Neal

EAGLE contributor

Friday’s Railroad Rivalry game never truly got started.

COFFEEVILLE — While Water Valley vs. Coffeeville is a rivalry; they share a tenuous history and the victor receives a trophy, Friday night’s contest was over before sunset, as Water Valley trounced Coffeeville 49-6.

Senior standout Tay Rucker got the ball rolling, gashing the pirates with 60 yards and two touchdowns in the opening minutes. Building on this momentum, the Blue Devil defense proceeded to force two turnovers, scoring on one and punching it in three plays after another.

Before most fans could grab a burger and a Coke from the concession stand, the score was 28-0. For Water Valley head coach Brad Embry, Friday’s contest was an exercise in sticking to the game plan and keeping focus, regardless of the situation.

“Good teams play hard, regardless of the score. We did a pretty good job of staying focused. We had some busts, but it’s human nature,” Embry said.

While Water Valley busted a few coverages defensively, they smothered the Coffeeville attack. The Blue Devil defense forced more negative gains than positive in the first half, and did not allow a first down until the ten-minute mark of the second quarter.

Embry attributed the team’s success to a smash-mouth brand of football, putting Coffeeville away in the first quarter.

“We played fast and we played physical. That first quarter we threw some licks, tackled well. I think our defense is in a good spot if we stay healthy,” Embry said.

As the first half waned, Water Valley tacked on six more points as Jacob Truss tossed a 54-yard touchdown heave to Cedric White to put to bed any chance of a Coffeeville comeback. The Blue Devils led 42-0 at halftime.

The clock ran continuously in the second half as Embry’s squad emptied the bench, adding one more score but allowing a long 40 yard Coffeeville touchdown. The Pirates touchdown set the score at 49-6, where it would stay as the final seconds ticked away in a convincing Water Valley victory.

The Water Valley defense forced four turnovers, and supplemented their tough D with a balanced offensive attack, as five different Blue Devils found the end zone.

Water Valley takes the field next Friday vs J.Z. George at 7 p.m. in Carrollton.