Big Performances And Tough Losses For AU Commits

A weekly update on the senior seasons of Auburn's football commitments for the class of 2006 is featured.

Auburn, Ala.—In a week when nine of Auburn's 11 commitments for the recruiting class of 2006 were in action there were some big-time performances, some big wins and some tough losses.

One of the biggest performances of the week came from Peach County wide receiver Chris Slaughter, who simply took his team on his back and led them to a big 31-14 win over Mary Persons.

Slaughter, who amazingly did all of his damage in the first half, started the scoring by returning a punt 49 yards for a TD. Next he pulled down a 31-yard TD pass for a 14-0 lead. Then, he pulled in a 53-yard score for a 21-0 lead, and then before the half grabbed a one-handed interception on defense and then pulled a pass away from a Mary Persons' defender for a 51-yard TD catch on the ensuing drive to make the score 28-0.

After halftime Peach County shut down the offense. For the game Slaughter had four catches for 156 yards, which accounted for all of his team's passing yards. He totaled three touchdowns, a punt return for a score and the interception.

Benjamin Tate

Another player who continues to shine three weeks into the season is Snow Hill's Benjamin Tate. The big, quick back is chewing up huge chunks of real estate every time he touches the ball.

In week three, Tate again lead his team to a big win and continued to raise his already amazing yards per carry stat. The 5-10 1/2, 210-pounder carried the ball 12 times and racked up an amazing 235 yards, which is 19.6 yards per carry, and three scores. He also converted a two-point play and added five tackles from his safety position in a 40-8 win over league foe Wicomico.

Through three games, Tate has rushed 31 times for 576 yards, which is an amazing average of 18.6 yards per carry. He also has six rushing TDs, a receiving TD and an interception return for a score.

Tigers' quarterback commitment Steven Ensminger is also doing a good job of leading his West Monroe, La., team to big wins following an opening week loss to a very good Longview, Tex., team.

This week in the region opener, Ensminger hit 6-11 passes for 127 yards and two scores in a 50-5 win over Airline. The 6-2, 199-pound QB added a rushing touchdown and interestingly enough booted a 50-yard punt for his team.

On the other side of the coin a big streak came to an end for one future Tiger's team this past weekend as Bart Eddins' Trinity team lost its first regular season contest in 46 games by dropping a 7-6 decision to W.S. Neal.

Despite the loss, Eddins was a big factor in the game for the Wildcats from his defensive tackle position. The 6-4, 260-pound defender tallied eight tackles including one for a loss and one sack, recovered a fumble and blocked a field goal attempt.

Bart Eddins has been a force in the middle for Trinty during his senior season.

Another player who suffered a tough loss was Charles Henderson's Zaccheus Etheridge. No one expected the Trojans to even hang with 6A powerhouse Enterprise after a slow start in 2005, but that is exactly what happened as the two teams went to overtime tied at seven.

However, the Trojans were not able to execute in overtime and Enterprise came away with the 14-7 win. In the loss, Etheridge had a strong offensive night for the Trojans. He racked up 109 yards of total offense on four rushes and five pass receptions.

Zaccheus Etheridge sees some time on both offense and defense for Charles Henderson, but will play defense on the college level.

Mario Fannin also had a tough weekend. He was unable to finish his team's game against Starr's Mill due to an ankle injury in the second half and his Lovejoy team came up a point short in a 20-19 loss to fall to 2-3 on the season. In a shortened performance, Fannin was able to rush for 112 yards in the first half.

Fannin, who was originally planning to take his official visit to Auburn this weekend, is now scheduled to do that for the Alabama at Auburn game.

Alex Rose and his First Coast team got a big win on homecoming over heated rival and Rose's former team, Ribault High. The Buccaneers rushed their way to a 27-6 win, however the passing game was sacrificed quite a bit. First Coast rushed for nearly 300 yards, but only threw for 62 yards in a game in which the receivers were not much of a factor at all.

Defensive line commitment Greg Smith and his NE Mississippi Community College team were finally able to get their season off and running over the weekend after the lingering effects of hurricane Katrina continually postponed action for the Tigers. However, things got off to a good start with a 20-13 win over Holmes Community College in game one.

Hendrick Leverette also helped push his team's record to 3-0 on Friday night with a 35-14 win over Clinton High. The Tigers' newest commitment Kareem Crowell had an off week, but has recorded 26 tackles and three sacks through four games.

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