When senior transfer Keone Kyle arrived at Edison this summer for practices, the Eagles' game plan for the 2005 season became obvious: control the ball.
So far, it's working to perfection, as Kyle and senior Devan Clark's running have lifted Edison to an unbeaten record and an average of 43 points per game.
Kyle and Clark will carry the bulk of the load for Edison (6-0, 3-0) as it heads into the toughest part of its Virginia AAA National District schedule, beginning with tomorrow's 1:30 p.m. home game against Yorktown (5-1, 2-1). Next week, the Eagles will face Loudoun Valley, the only other team that is unbeaten in National District play at 5-1, 3-0.
Kyle, who played for Paul VI Catholic last season, has used a bulky 6-foot-1, 242-pound frame to barrel his way to 537 yards and 11 touchdowns on 78 carries this season. He complements the quicker Clark, who is 5-11 and 200 pounds and has rushed 86 times for 666 yards and eight touchdowns.
"Our game plan is try to get the ball back and let our offense control the football," said Coach Vaughn Lewis, whose 2004 team finished second in scoring in the Northern Region. "Devan and Keone provide a different look in the backfield that makes opponents have to adjust."
While Kyle has helped solidify the ground game, a much-improved Edison passing attack has helped as well. Eagles junior quarterback Shawn Lloyd is on pace to deliver one of the team's most complete passing performances since 2001. He already has amassed 631 yards and 10 touchdowns on 36-of-65 passing with one interception. Four years ago, Edison passed for 844 yards in the entire season.
Add to the mix a defense that has yielded an average of seven points per game, and the Eagles seem ready to return to the AAA Division 5 playoffs, where they advanced to the region final last fall.
"The balance in the offense is one of the great points at Edison," Clark said. "We have great receivers, and when they do well, it opens up holes and stretches out the defense so that it takes the focus off the running game. I'd like as little focus as possible."