NORTH AUGUSTA — The Newberry Academy football team opened its season with a bang Friday night, defeating Curtis Baptist in North Augusta, 44-14.
The Eagles turned the ball over on their first possession, but responded with the first score of the game on their second try.
Quarterback Tyrese Taylor set up the score with a 38-yard run, and then finished the job with a three-yard plunge. Daniel Bannister converted the two-point play, as Newberry took the lead 8-0.
Curtis Baptist responded with a score of its own in the second quarter, and the game was tied 8-8 at the half.
The second half belonged to the Eagles. Newberry scored on its next five possessions, including three touchdowns in the third period. A quick 9-yard slant to Tabb French for a touchdown in the third period broke the tie, and then another touchdown pass to Bannister from Taylor made the score 22-8.
Curtis Baptist was unable to recover, only scoring a late touchdown when the game was out of reach. The Newberry defense stymied the home team for most of the night, coming up with four turnovers.
Taylor rolled up 130 yards rushing and scored twice, while also going 8 for 10 passing for 127 yards with two touchdowns.
Bannister finished with more than 100 yards of offense, ran for two scores and caught a pass for another. French led all receivers with 73 yards and a touchdown.
The Eagles have their home opener Friday against Northside Christian.