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FPD Surges to 31-6 Homecoming Victory Over Tattnall Square

MACON, Ga. – The FPD senior football players took matters into their own hands and called a team meeting on Monday, Oct. 12.

The Vikings were in the midst of a three-game losing skid and the message was simple: it was time to turn the 2015 season around as fast as possible.

Friday night, part of that goal was accomplished as the Vikings (3-4, 1-2 Reg. 7-A) defeated the Tattnall Square Academy Trojans (3-4, 0-3 Reg. 7-A) 31-6 on Homecoming 2015. The victory also snaps a six-game slide against the Trojans dating back to 2006.

“Our guys in our red hats still believe in what we’re doing as a team and they came out determined tonight,” FPD head football coach Greg Moore said. “Everyone deserves to be congratulated and enjoy the night because a win on Homecoming is a present for our school.”

The Vikings indeed enjoyed presents, primarily via senior running back Dontrez Johnson.

Johnson finished with four touchdowns and 205 yards rushing, including a 68-yard touchdown run with 1:02 remaining in the game followed by a pick-six with 2.1 seconds in regulation to seal the victory for the Vikings.

“It feels amazing to win this one,” Johnson said. “I have to give credit to all my teammates who helped block for me and help me score those touchdowns. I thank God for my teammates and that we came away with a win.”

After a scoreless first quarter, the Vikings broke the tie with 3-yard run by Johnson and Brad Powell tacked on the extra point to give the Vikings a 7-0 lead.

Nearly eight minutes later, Powell hit a 30-yard field goal to give FPD a 10-0 lead at halftime.

“Our guys are so happy right now,” Powell said. “We had so much heart coming into this game. I think the most important part is that we got back to having fun as a team and we gave it all.”

In the second half, though, the Trojans struck on the first play from scrimmage.

Quarterback Miles Morris found Aubrien Kemp for an 80-yard touchdown but Luke Laskey missed the point-after for a 10-6 Viking advantage.

That’s when Moore saw the Vikings respond on the field after Tattnall attempted a comeback.

“It all goes back to Monday’s meeting and practice,” Moore said. “It’s OK to say all those things that you’re going to stick together and get the thing done, but when you do it in some adverse things like the beginning of the third quarter, then you get the reward for being able to do it right.”

That reward was Johnson the rest of the game.

In the fourth quarter, Johnson punched in his second score on a 3-yard run with 11:23 to play and Powell made the extra point for a 17-6 FPD lead.

After both squads battled midway through the fourth quarter, Will McCormick intercepted a pass with just over one minute remaining to set the stage Viking fans have been yearning for all season.

On the first play from scrimmage with 1:02 remaining, Johnson rushed out in front of the Trojan line untouched for a 68-yard touchdown. With Powell’s kick, FPD had sealed the win at 24-6.

But to add icing on the cake, Johnson picked off a Morris pass with time expiring and returned it 70 yards for another touchdown. Powell’s PAT was good for a 31-6 win.

“To see his (Dontrez’s) performance tonight and see the rest of the guys get so excited around him was really neat,” Moore said. “He’d be the first to tell you it happened because of things that his teammates were doing on the field too.”

Fellow FPD seniors also knew the importance of the win. It keeps FPD’s playoff hopes alive as the regular season dwindles down.

“That game was awesome and we had so much fun,” quarterback Will McCormick said. “We have to keep playing like we did tonight. We have to play with a lot of fight and a lot of heart to win some tough games coming up.”

Added linebacker Andrew Bevill: “This will hopefully set the momentum for the rest of our season,” Bevill said. “I just love everyone of my brothers on this team.”

And cornerback Jack Sawyer: “We really have to win out. This is our season right here,” Sawyer said. “We’ve had a few tough weeks but it was nice to win this one tonight.”

Moore said the team will enjoy the victory and get back to work next week.

“We’ll enjoy this one tonight,” Moore said. “I’m proud of our kids and our staff. They’ve hung in there, kept preparing and kept putting plans together. That’s not hard to do when you’re winning, but that’s real hard to do when things aren’t going well. I’m proud of all of them to get rewarded tonight.”

Indeed it was a reward. There’s truly nothing like a Viking victory on a Homecoming.

FPD returns to action on Friday, Oct. 23, traveling to Wilkinson County in Irwinton, Ga. for a key Sub-Region 7-A contest.

Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. against the Warriors (5-2) who knocked off Mount de Sales 42-7 on Friday night.

The First Presbyterian Day School Department of Athletics strives to build the student athlete both in the playing arena and the classroom while upholding the school’s mission statement to educate and equip students to change the world for God’s glory. For more information, visit www.fpdvikings.com and sign up for up-to-the-minute news and scores by following the Vikings on Twitter at @FPDVikingSports and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/fpdathletics.

ODDS and ENDS (Game Notes):

— FPD senior Sydney Reese was named the 2015 Homecoming Queen on Friday night. Reese plays basketball and tennis for the Lady Vikings.
— FPD picked up it’s 16th win in series against Tattnall on Friday night. The Trojans leads the all-time series 30-16.
— The Vikings snapped a three-game losing streak Friday’s victory while Tattnall’s slide falls to four straight.
— In GHSA play, the Vikings and Trojans are 1-1 all-time. 2014 marked the first time both schools had played since being in the league.
— With Friday’s win, FPD is now 2-1 at Austin Childers Field at George S. Johnson Stadium in 2015.
— Senior kicker Brad Powell was 4-for-4 on PAt’s, hit a 30-yard field goal and finished with three touchbacks.
— FPD rushed for 300 yards on 53 attempts. 205 yards were recorded by Dontrez Johnson on 27 carries.
— The Vikings finished with 16 first downs, 13 of which came via the rush.
— The Vikings totaled 66 total plays from scrimmage while holding Tattnall to 53.
— FPD wide receiver and punter Daniel Weaver two receptions for 11 yards and three punts for 123 yards.
— The last time the Vikings scored over 30 points in a game against Tattnall was in 2005. FPD defeated the Trojans 31-28 in overtime at George S. Johnson Stadium.
— FPD head coach Greg Moore picked win no. 118 on Friday night.

POST-GAME VIDEO:

Post-Game Team Meeting:

Dontrez Johnson:

Will McCormick:

Brad Powell:

Andrew Bevill:

Jack Sawyer:

Head Coach Greg Moore:

PHOTOS:
CLICK HERE to see photos from Homecoming Night 2015 on our Flickr page!

MEDIA COVERAGE:
13WMAZ Football Friday Night Highlights (13WMAZ)
Dontrez Johnson Leads FPD over Tattnall Square (Macon Telegraph)
The End Zone Highlights of FPD vs. Tattnall (41NBC)

BOX SCORE:

FPD 31, TATTNALL SQUARE 6

Tattnall Square 0-0-6-0—6
FPD 0-10-0-21—31

Second Quarter
FPD — Johnson 3 run (Powell kick)
FPD — Powell 30 field goal

Third Quarter
TSA — Kemp 80 pass from Morris (kick failed)

Fourth Quarter
FPD — Johnson 3 run (Powell kick)
FPD — Johnson 68 run (Powell kick)
FPD — Johnson 70 int return (Powell kick)

TSA — FPD
First downs 10 — 16
Rushes-yards 16-42 — 53-300
Passing yards 212 — 64
Comp-Att-Int 16-31-3 — 5-10-1
Fumbles-Fumbles lost 2-0 — 1-1
Penalties-yards 7-58 — 3-20

TOP INDIVIDUALS
RUSHING — Tattnall Square: Game 5-32; FPD: Johnson 27-205.
PASSING — Tattnall Square: Morris 16-29-3 212; FPD: McCormick 5-10-1.
RECEIVING — Tattnall Square: Kemp 4-106; FPD: Smith 2-29 Gant 1-24.

HOMECOMING QUEEN 2015: Sydney Reese

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IMAGE of the NIGHT: Dontrez Johnson, who finished with four touchdowns, celebrates after a big Viking play.

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