Eagles soar to 4-0 for fourth straight season
The team took a long road trip to play the Mabank freshman team on Thursday night, winning 26-0 and without two key Eagle players.
Milano played without leading rusher and senior quarterback and safety Toby Sanders who is recovering from a shoulder injury sustained in Milano’s win over Iola on Sept. 14.
Junior back Jordan Millar, who also is the back-up quarterback, also did not play at Mabank, being sidelined with a leg injury.
Eagles head coach Craig Jentsch would not comment on whether either would play against Chilton on Friday.
Thursday’s game at Mabank was a one time thing as the two teams will not play next year. It was a filler game for last week as Milano had scheduled Holland after the UIL’s biennial realignment, but Hornet coaches pulled out of that commitment earlier in the spring after Holland got a new head coach, leaving Jentsch looking for someone to play.
Mabank is located 19 miles northwest of Athens and is in District 15-3A.
NEW PERSONNEL—Sophomore Derek Walton and junior David Jentsch stepped in at quarterback to lead Milano on Thursday. Walton rushed for 22 yards on nine carries and a touchdown. Jentsch just ran the ball three times for 43 yards and scored as well.
Both Walton and Jentsch completed one pass and both were to senior receiver Dominique Messer, who finished with 63 yards on the night. Walton hit Messer for a 36 yard gain. Jentsch found Messer near the goal line and connected for a 27 yard touchdown in the second quarter.
Walton’s score finished up the Eagles’ scoring for the opening half.
Jentsch’s scoring run in the third quarter and a conversion pass to Mik Mader put the Eagles up 20-0 at the end of three.
Freshman J.D. Gibbons has been moved up to varsity from the junior varsity squad to give Milano more depth at running back, safety and on special teams. He proved to coaches it was the right move, as Gibbons ran a punt back 68 yards in the fourth quarter to round out the Eagles’ scoring.
“We got to play a lot of kids at a lot of different positions,” Coach Jentsch said.
Milano’s kicking game is still struggling, missing all three extra points against Mabank.
“Our kicking game still needs work,” Coach Jentsch said. “We need to find the right personnel.” Milano has tried three different place kickers and two punters in their first four games.
They had depended on now graduated John Jentsch for kicking duties the last two season. Jentsch was an all-state punter in 2011.
Defensively, junior Justin Grimes snagged three Mabank passes for interceptions during his standout game. Mitchell Neal and Walton each had a fumble recovery.
Trent Ellison led the Eagles in tackles with six on the night and a sack. Messer added five tackles.
SCOUTING CHILTON— Milano will travel to Chilton on Friday night for their last game before District 13A-II play starts on Oct. 12. The Eagles are open next week.
The Pirates are struggling this season, sitting at 1-3 after being ranked in the Top 10 in preseason polls. Chilton fell to No. 12 Bosqueville last week 42-7.
Despite their record, Coach Jentsch is preparing to face a tough, big and fast Pirates squad.
“They have taken good losses to good competition,” Coach Jentsch said about Chilton. They have fallen to Thorndale, Burton and Bosqueville, all who have received votes in state Class A polls.
“We are going to have to play a very good game to get a win, but it not out of the question,” Coach Jentsch added. “They will put seven or eight people in the box some times and force you to throw the football. They have big play capabilities.”
Chilton’s spread offense is led by quarterback Norvell Austin and athlete Kyondris Landrum.
They return six starters on either side of the ball from last year’s regional semifinalist team.
Milano upset Chilton in last year’s meeting, defeating the Pirates 27-25 on a 33-yard field goal by John Jentsch with just 21 seconds left in the game.
“They are going to be a good challenge for us,” Coach Jentsch said. “We have to capitalize on turnovers and play sound defense.”
SUB-VARSITY—Milano’s junior varsity squad fell to 2-2 on the year, losing on the road to Leon Thursday 19-13.
Coaches listed leading receivers as Travis Gage with six catches for 70 yards, Efrain Flores with one catch and a 60 yard touchdown, Jason Paniagua with two catches for 30 yards and Cole Sheppard one catch for 5 yards.
Quarterback Christian Grimes was 10 of 18 for 165 yards and four interceptions.
Rushing, Grimes and Sheppard each tallied 60 rushing yards with Grimes scoring a touchdown.
milano 26, Mabank 9th 0
MILANO—Dominique Messer 27 pass from
David Jentsch (kick failed) 5:18
MILANO—Derek Walton 8 run (kick failed)
MILANO—Jentsch 27 run (Mik Mader pass
from Jentsch) 0:38
MILANO—JD Gibbons 68 punt return (kick
RUSHING— Milano: Jentsch 3-43 TD;
Chance Pack 3-30; Sabian Pugh 2-26; Gibbons 5-25; Derek Walton 9-22 TD; Junior
Gallarado 2-12; Mader 2-1; Team 2-(-10).
PASSING—Milano: Walton 1-2-0 36 yards;
Jentsch 1-1-0 27 yards TD.
RECEIVING—Milano: Messer 2-63 TD.
TACKLES—Milano: Trent Ellison 6, Messer
5, Mik Mader 3, Alex Ferrara 3, Justin
Grimes 2, Makenan Hairston 2, Chris
This week—Milano at Chilton; Bartlett at Meridian; Granger at Thorndale; Snook at Normangee. Burton, Somerville and Snook are open this week.
Last week—Milano 26, Mabank 9th 0; Holland 34, Bartlett 26 (OT); Bremond 28, Burton 14; Thrall 26, Granger 21; Leon 52, Somerville 0; Normangee 20, Snook 19.
MILANO SEASON LEADERS
RUSHING— Sanders 37-206 3TD; Millar 30-204 2TD; Pack 23-169; Gallarado 12-79 2TD; Neal 6-54 TD; Derek Walton 15-51 TD.
PASSING—Sanders 17-50-1 281 yards 4TD; Millar 0-1-0 0 yards; Walton 1-2-0 36 yards; Jentsch 1-1- 0 27 yards TD.
RECEIVING—Messer 8-195 3TD; Millar 3-47 TD; Mader 3-19; Grimes 2-16.
TACKLES—Messer 41, Tyler Prazak 21, Ellison 20, Jordan Millar 20, Ferrara 16, Walton 16, Rowan 11.