ACKERMAN – The Ackerman High School football team could not find its offense, but found two big plays on special teams to ensure a win.
The Indians beat Choctaw County rival French Camp 14-3 Friday night to improve to 3-0 for the season at Dale Davidson Field.
The Ackerman offense struggled early on and fumbled the ball on its second play from scrimmage. It had four fumbles in the contest.
It wasn't until early in the second quarter when the Indians put some points on the board.
Trent Furr boomed a 47-yard punt to French Camp's Hagan Box, who fielded it on the goal line. Box was taken down at the 1-yard line.
"Typically, you don't want your guy returning it from back there," Ackerman head coach Adam Dillinger said. "He thought he may have had something, I'm not sure. He caught he and we did a good job of getting down there and covering."
Furr had already punted in the game, but he kicked it out of bounds for short yardage.
"I just tried to get the snap and punt it the best I could and get some hang time on it," Furr said.
The Panthers (1-2) fumbled it on the second play of the drive and Furr recovered it on the French Camp 5-yard line.
Two plays later, Indian quarterback Dakota Brasher rushed it in from 7 yards to put Ackerman on the board.
Ackerman's Jamarcus Bradley provided another spark on special teams, when he returned a punt 47 yards to the French Camp 9-yard line.
"We work special teams every week and we expect to make those kind of plays," Dillinger said.
On fourth and goal from the one, Dillinger elected to go for it and Brasher found the end zone for a second time to give the Indians a 14-0 lead at the half.
Brasher left the game, midway through the third quarter, when he was injured on a rushing play. He was helped off the field and was stretching out his leg and getting his knee looked at by the trainer. He came back for the final series, but just handed it off to K'Tre Brown.
"We are going to get him checked out (today) and just go from there," Dillinger said. "I know this about him, if he can go he's going to play."
The Indian defense kept French Camp in check and only allowed the Panthers to pick up seven first downs.
"They played good," Dillinger said. "We got a little tired at the end. I wasn't real happy about that. There were still some assignments we missed and we gave them a big first down on a pass play."
French Camp got its only points when Sam Gould kicked a 31-yard field goal with 8:10 left in the game.
"I don't think we played our best," Dillinger said. "I think we played a better ballgame last week. I don't think we played our best, but we'll take the win.
"We just have to play better. When we did have things going we turned it over. That is something we can't do. We have to protect the football. We can't give up field position by coughing it up."
A year ago the Indians were 2-1, but the record is not what Dillinger and Ackerman looks at.
"You want to win all your ballgames," Dillinger said. "It doesn't count any. Our main goal each week is to get better. It is really not worrying about the win. I don't know if we accomplished our goal this week. We want to be 3-0 and I would rather have an ugly win than a pretty loss."
Ackerman is back in action next Friday night and travels to Houston for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff.
The Indians will look to be avenging last year's 32-7 loss at home.
"We are just going to have to go into the next three weeks and play hard," Furr said. "We are going to be playing better teams."