Auburn High School got an unofficial start to its football season with a spring practice game Thursday night, topping Eufaula 35-14 under the leadership of new head coach Keith Etheredge.
The game against 6A Eufaula marked the end of Auburn High's spring practices.
Things were slow going in the first quarter but picked up in the second. With 10:10 left on the clock in the second quarter, Eufaula scored and took the early 7-0 lead.
On third and goal for Auburn High, Marcellous Josephson battled to get in the end zone for a touchdown, bringing the score to 7-7 with 6:11 remaining in the first half. Eufaula answered with a touchdown with 21.1 seconds left in the second quarter, giving them a one-touchdown advantage going into halftime.
Auburn High came out swinging in the second half and kept Eufaula scoreless for the remainder of the game. With 8:44 to go in the third quarter, Jamarious Woods scored to tie the game at 14.
Camden Etheredge scored an Auburn High touchdown with 5:41 left in the third, to give Auburn High the lead 21-14. Following that drive, Eufaula's head coach received an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.
With 3:53 to go in the third, VJ Levett scored, giving Auburn High the 28-14 lead. As time expired in the third quarter, Auburn's Nasir Pogue made an interception in the endzone.
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Tyler Flakes scored the final touchdown of the night for Auburn with 3:37 remaining in the game. Auburn High went on to defeat Eufaula 35-14.
While Auburn High came out with a victory, the first-year Auburn High head coach saw room for improvement.
“We started out a little slow, but we came back and made some plays in the second half,” Etheredge said.
Because this was a practice game, Etheredge said he wanted as many players as possible to get time on the field.
“We were trying to find a way to play all 168 of these guys,” Etheredge said jokingly. “I’m proud of our guys. I think our guys came out and fought hard, and I saw some real good things as well as things we need to work on. I am excited."
Starting quarterback Clyde Pittman received approval from Etheredge following the Tigers' victory. Pittman completed 14 passes throwing for three touchdowns for Auburn.
“In the first half, I felt a little shaky, after that, I felt really good,” Pittman said.
Going into halftime trailing by a touchdown, Pittman said they made some adjustments in the locker room.
“We knew they were bringing a lot of people, so we had to get the ball out quickly,” Pittman said.
For Pittman, this spring game also helped him see what he needs to work on in the summer.
“There were some parts where we should have made some long plays and just didn’t do it,” Pittman said. “Going forward, I expect a good season."
Making his debut as an Auburn High Tiger was Camden Etheredge in the number 28 jersey. Camden said he is looking forward to his senior year playing for his dad.
“It’s amazing just to come here and to have the opportunity to play for my dad once again and hopefully to have a great senior year,” Camden Etheredge said.
While spring is officially over, Camden Etheredge said he has some personal goals he wants to accomplish before the season starts in August.
“I want to hit the weight room harder so I can be able to do more at receiver and tight end,” he said.
Auburn High kicks off its regular season on Aug. 20 at Duck Samford Stadium against Park Crossing.
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