It doesn’t seem to matter who’s running the ball, but Fork Union is getting it done on the ground right now, and a strong ground game plus a stingy, opportunistic defense has become the clear recipe for success for the Blue Devils.
Fork Union won its sixth game in a row with the formula, knocking off St. Christopher’s 27-14 Friday afternoon to move to 6-1 on the season.
With the win and the subsequent loss by St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes Saturday against Blue Ridge, the Blue Devils should find themselves ranked in the top spot in Division 1 this week when the new rankings are released.
Malcolm Cook struck again on an interception return for a touchdown, this time from 100-yards out to put the Blue Devils up 10-7 in the first half. Cook was dominant throughout, with nine total tackles, seven of them coming on solo stops.
But the Saints refused to go away easily, scoring with 29 seconds left before halftime to snag a 14-10 lead.
But in the second half, the Blue Devils’ ground game took over, with Nick King’s 119 yards on 21 touches setting the pace. Christian Hackenberg got in on the action with 55 yards on nine carries while T.J. Dudley was a red zone force with 29 yards and two touchdowns on just four attempts.
St. Christopher’s held Hackenberg in check as the standout quarterback finished with 7-of-18 passing for 53 yards. But the attention the Saints had to pay to the air attack clearly opened up things for the run game.
Chrystian Brown led the Blue Devils’ pass catchers with 51 yards on three catches.
Dylan McCormick knocked in a pair of field goals for the Blue Devils, the first late in the first quarter from 29 yards out and the second in the third quarter from 27 yards away.
The Blue Devils created five total turnovers by St. Christopher’s, with Roma Michael picking off a pass to go with Cook’s interception and Brett Seigel, Julius Puryear and T.J. Dudley all recovering fumbles.
Brett Seigel had two sacks for Fork Union and Austin Stone came up with his own sack too.
The Blue Devils will face off Friday afternoon against Liberty Christian Academy, the probable No. 2-ranked team in the next poll.