The win was a second straight convincing triumph for Etowah and pushed its record to 2-0 for the first time since 2008.
“Our offensive line executed big time (Friday), and our running backs found holes, broke tackles and made big, big plays,” Etowah coach Dave Svehla said. “We’re excited to be where we are right now. We’re 2-0, and you can’t ask for more than that.”
Senior running back Brandon Engle led the Eagles’ ground game with 277 yards and two touchdowns on eight carries. His night included touchdown runs of 87 and 80 yards, and it was highlighted by a third quarter that saw him run for 203 yards on just three carries.
“The thing we like about Brandon is that he can run physical inside, but he also does a great job of being patient at the line of scrimmage, finding the hole and accelerating,” Svehla said. “Once he accelerates, he is a pretty hard kind to catch.”
Leading 16-10 coming out of halftime, Engle took the opening snap 80 yards up the left sideline to give Etowah a 23-10 lead.
A quick three-and-out from the Eagle defense set Etowah’s offense up at midfield, where Engle bobbed and weaved for 36 yards inside the 20. Fullback Keith Gordon gave Etowah a 30-10 lead two plays later on a 3-yard run up the gut.
Engle capped off his third quarter with an 87-yard dash straight up the middle, pushing Etowah’s lead to 37-10 in the process.
Stanlee Logue added a 51-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to run the home scoreboard up to 44.
Oliver, who found Ben Rowell and Noah Dye for short touchdown passes in the first half, finished the game with 66 yards passing and 77 more on the ground. Defensive end Chandler Steele led the Etowah defense with three of the Eagles’ six sacks and a first-quarter fumble recovery.
“Our defense played really well, I thought, especially our front four,” Svehla said. “With that offense (Centennial) runs, you aren’t going to keep them from racking up yards, but you can keep them out of the end zone. We did a good job of that (Friday).”
Centennial threw the ball 42 times on the night, totaling 423 yards through the air. Caden Herring led the Knights’ receivers with 136 yards on seven grabs, while Christian Robinson had 121 yards on four catches.
Etowah will host Pope next Friday in its final non-region game.
“We won’t need any for that one,” Svehla said. “They beat us 20-17 in overtime last year and we’re excited to match up with them one more time.”