Football: Eagles ‘looking to get back to the basics’ after loss at Saline

One week after suffering a devastating, down-to-the wire loss to Tecumseh, Skyline football suffered another blow but there was nothing close about this one. The Eagles fell 63-0 on Friday at Saline to one of the best teams in the state in an SEC Red Division game.

This one left usually positive head coach Andrew Sorgatz searching for answers.

“They’re a very good team, and we made too many mistakes,” Sorgatz said. “We knew we couldn’t make that many mistakes coming in, and we did. We just need to get back to the basics and make less mistakes.”

Asked where the team needed to improve, Sorgatz bluntly answered “on a whole lot.”

The missteps for the Eagles started early, when Skyline quarterback Addison Taylor-Coquillard threw an interception on the game’s opening drive, setting Saline up deep in Skyline territory. The Hornets instantly capitalized with a 12-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Larry Robinson II to Nathan Holmberg, taking a 7-0 lead barely less than two minutes into the quarter.

After the Eagles were forced to punt, Saline struck again with a 6-yard touchdown run from Robinson, giving the Hornets a 14-0 lead with 4:19 remaining in the first quarter. The drive was aided by another Skyline mistake, a facemask penalty that spared Saline a third-and-long.

Things went from bad to worse for Skyline when Saline’s Nick Walper blocked a punt, setting the Hornets up again deep in Eagles’ territory. Skyline forced Saline into fourth-and-8 after a nice run stop from linebacker Hugh McCurren, but consecutive Skyline offsides penalties gave the Hornets a first down, and Josh Rush scored on a 3-yard rush on the first play of the second quarter, extending Saline’s lead to 21-0.

Skyline’s offense was unable to move the ball against Saline’s stout defense, generating only two first downs in the first half. Saline, meanwhile, was able to move the ball at will, and added three more touchdowns in the second quarter to take a 42-0 halftime lead.

Robinson, who finished with five touchdowns, ran for a 48-yard score and added two passing touchdowns for the Hornets in the second quarter alone.

Saline’s large lead forced a running clock for the second half. The Hornets scored four times in the second half. The mistakes continued to pile up for the Eagles, and Saline added insult to injury, picking off a Taylor-Coquillard pass for a touchdown to increase its lead to 63-0 with 10:09 remaining in the game.

Saline wrapped up its seventh-consecutive Southeastern Conference Red Division title, improving to 5-0 for the season. Skyline drops to 1-3, and will return to action next Friday when it hosts Ypsilanti Lincoln. The game will kick off at 7 p.m.