After committing four turnovers in the first half, Aberdeen (6-2) locked down on defense for a 21-12 homecoming game victory against Havre de Grace (4-4) Thursday night.
It was more than just homecoming for the students as Aberdeen head coach Johnny Brooks came out on top in his first game against his former school. Some of Brooks' former players and students are still attending Havre de Grace.
"It's like a homecoming for me too," said Brooks. "I wanted to win, but I wanted the Havre de Gace kids to play well. I was actually having a good time watching them to be honest with you, because I haven't had a chance to see them play this year. I coached some of them for a number of years, and it was good to see the maturation they've made."
Other than Aberdeen quarterback Kenny Faulcon's 40-yard touchdown to give the Eagles a 7-6 lead at halftime, the offense was plagued by mistakes, turning the ball over four times in the first half.
"We were really sloppy in the first half with all the fumbles we had. I think that homecoming had a lot to do with the kids mental aspect of the game, but we bounced back. I'm not taking anything away from Havre de Grace," Brooks said.
The Eagles began to pull away in the third quarter with Faulcon throwing a touchdown pass to wide receiver Chavez Cheatham.
"When I started out, I was a little shaky. I fumbled a couple of times, but I got my head straight after halftime," said Cheatham, who made an interception in the second quarter while playing defense.
On Havre de Grace's ensuing drive, Aberdeen defensive back Maurice Harris recovered a fumble and returned it 28 yards for a touchdown.
"That felt great. Coach gave us a talk at halftime about needing to hustle, so I picked it up and scored," said Harris.
Havre de Grace quarterback Lavell McCullers had a late touchdown pass to bring the Warriors to within nine points but on the Warriors' last drive, Harris recovered a fumble to secure the win.
Next week, Aberdeen will visit C. Milton Wright (2-6) and Havre de Grace will host Bel Air (2-6).