MSD Eagles Varsity Football team suffers homecoming game defeat to Deerfield Beach

Fans in the stands watch as the Eagles suffer a major loss.

David Lopez, Sports editor

On Friday, Sept. 17, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School varsity football team set up for a 7:00 p.m. kickoff against the 2-1 Deerfield Beach High School Bucks. Along with the matchup being the Eagles’ homecoming game, the team was also given the task of trying to hold back the Deerfield team, which is ranked as one of the best varsity football teams in the state of Florida.

After the Eagles’ previous game was suspended while the team held a 14-0 lead, the Eagles brought a 2-0 record and some confidence into this matchup. Expecting another full crowd, the MSD team looked to have a competitive and exciting game from the start.

Similar to their matchup against West Broward, the weather posed a risk to the status of the game. Storm clouds surrounded the area before the kickoff, followed by a lightning warning that delayed the start of the game.

At 7:45 p.m., the teams were finally able to kickoff, the Eagles receiving the ball first. The kickoff return led to a huge gain for the Eagles, with their first opportunity to score being only 10 yards away from the end zone.

Although granted a strong opportunity to score, the Eagles’ offense started off very poorly with an interception from quarterback Ryan Spallina (15) that set the tone for the rest of the game. Soon afterwards, Spallina was injured on a play and the Eagles were forced to bring in backup quarterback Hunter Rose (11.) The Bucks defense was aggressive throughout the first half, creating difficulties for an Eagles team that already had trouble scoring in the first quarter of their first three games.

“Hopefully we get our quarterback back soon, that should help. But we still need to work on our covers and fix some of the plays we ran to be better as a team overall,” cornerback Luke Evans (7) said.

A positive for the Eagles was on defense, where they were able to hold the Bucks to just a field goal in the first quarter, a 3-0 lead for Deerfield. However, this quickly changed at the end of the first half when the Bucks scored multiple touchdowns in quick succession. The talent of Deerfield’s team was difficult to handle, where many of their players have already received offers from Division 1 universities.

Each time the Eagles offense received the ball, the drive was quickly stifled and not much momentum could build, regardless of the loud support coming from the bleachers that were packed with fans.

After the Bucks continued to press forward and began to dominate the game, the Eagles could do very little to take control. The Bucks held a 22-0 halftime lead, and not much would change from that point forward.

After the Eagles’ defense was able to handle the Bucks in the second half, the Eagles scored their only points of the game on a safety. The matchup ended at a score of 29-2, a disappointing effort for the Eagles who had high expectations coming into the game.

“I just think we were not really prepared. We had not played in an environment of that level and some of us were not prepared for that moment. We’ll make adjustments and be ready for the next game,” cornerback Calvin Fowler Jr. (21) said.

The loss leaves the Eagles with a 2-1 record, forcing the team to regroup and recover before their next game on Oct. 1, on the road against the Boca Raton High School Bobcats.