The Mercer County Golden Eagle defense held opponents scoreless for the third time in four games Friday night defeating Princeville, 33-0.
"I feel pretty good about it," said senior Bobby Lincoln after the game. "I think we made a step in the right direction. The offensive line really stepped it up."
The Golden Eagles scored on heir first possession as Tyson Russell scored on a 46 yard run with 8:18 remaining in the first quarter.
"I told the offensive line before the game that if they did their job we (the running backs) would do the rest," said Russell after the game. The senior had a big night running for 146 yards on 17 carries and scoring twice for Mercer County.
Those points would be the only ones in the first quarter.
The Golden Eagles scored again in the second period on a nine yard run by Matt Weeks. The Golden Eagles led 13-0 with 7:42 remanning in the second period.
The Golden Eagle got another chance to score soon afterward as their defense forced a poor kick by the Princes and Mercer County ended up with the ball at the Princeville 35 yard line.
The Golden Eagles scored on an eight play 35 yard drive when Russell went across from nine yards out leveling a Princeville defender in the endzone.
The Golden Eagles led 19-0 at the half.
The Golden Eagles scored again with 4:58 remaining in the third period. Spencer Wood connected with Tyson Nylin on a 38 yard pass down to the Princes' three yard line. Two plays later Chris Neeld scored on a four yard run. Wood completed the conversion pass to Blake Russell and Mercer County led 27-0.
"We've been working on our deep ball," said Nylin. "It's just something else to add to our arsenal. The offensive line handed the game for us. They played well. Our offensive line just clicked."
The Princes put together a 14 play drive at the end of the third quarter. Princeville quarterback Mitchell Janssen completed passes tot Thomas Smith and Michael Sheets along the way. The drive ended when Princeville running back Tristin Jenkens was thrown for a three yard loss on a fourth and goal play from the Mercer County 10 yard line.
The Golden Eagles put one more scoring drive together following a big punt return from Tyson Nylin down to the Princes 15 yard line. Two plays later Wood connected with Brody Lloyd for the touchdown. The Golden Eagles led 33-0 with 6:39 remaining.