SUWANEE, Ga. — Milton head coach Adam Clack said the goal for the Eagles on Friday night against Lambert was to get the momentum early.
“In evaluating the last three weeks, we saw a pattern that we needed to improve on which was starting fast,” he said. “We’ve been a great second half time, but in the first we’ve been falling behind.”
So needless to say he was pleased when his team came out, forced a punt on Lambert’s opening drive, and then scored on their first offensive play.
Syaire Waters took a handoff on the right side and rushed for 71 yards and a score to put the Eagles up less than three minutes into the game.
“To see us come out and play fast like that was a huge shot in the arm,” Clack said. “The kids responded to our challenge all week in practice.”
Waters’ score would be the first of three long touchdowns in the first half for the Eagles. Solomon Vanhorse rushed in from 67 yards out and Waters found the end zone again on a flea flicker reception of 41 yards.
Waters’ second score put Milton in a 21-10 lead with five minutes remaining in the second quarter.
Field goals on 20 and 42 yards from Hayden Hairston in the third and a Jordan Yates rushing score with nine minutes left in the game allowed the Eagles to build an insurmountable lead.
While the offense racked up points, Milton’s defense kept Lambert running back Marcus Chatelain’s success to a minimum.
Chatelain reeled off a 14-yard touchdown to tie the game at 7-7, but was held to 188 yards on 44 carries in the game.
“I couldn’t be more impressed with the defense,” Clack said. “They have a really good tailback. When he touches the ball 44 times, we showed that we still kept him in check.”
It was an important performance for his team all-around, Clack said. After lackluster performances the past three weeks, he was happy to see his team thrive so late in the season.
“We don’t feel like we were playing 48 minutes to the ability that we are capable of,” he said. “In the final two games, you are running out of time to close that gap. We feel like we are right on the verge. We aren’t satisfied with just getting a win, we need to play to our best ability.”
Milton’s win puts the Eagles at 3-1 in region play heading into their regular season finale against North Forsyth.
If West Forsyth beats South and Milton beats North next Friday, it will set up a three-way tie for first in the region which would go to tiebreakers.
However, Clack isn’t concerned with that.
“First thing we have to do is beat North Forsyth, because if we don’t do that, none of that matters,” he said.