West­lake foot­ball runs past Lackey

Wolver­ines blank Charg­ers in sec­ond half

Maryland Independent - - Front Page - By TED BLACK tblack@somd­news.com

On a night when the mo­men­tum seemed the shift re­peat­edly within a mat­ter of plays late in the first half, the West­lake High School foot­ball team made all the big plays in the sec­ond half en route to a 3814 vic­tory over host Lackey on Fri­day night in a South­ern Mary­land Ath­letic Con­fer­ence Ch­e­sa­peake Di­vi­sion clash.

West­lake (4-2 over­all, 2-0 SMAC Ch­e­sa­peake) recorded its third straight vic­tory by hold­ing the host Charg­ers score­less in the sec­ond half af­ter the two teams com­bined for 28 points in the last four min­utes of the first half.

Lackey (3-3, 1-2) may have headed into the in­ter­mis­sion with the mo­men­tum cour­tesy of a late touch­down toss from quar­ter­back Robert Mid­dle­ton to Jonathan Brid­gett, but the Wolver­ines re­gained it early in the third quar­ter and main­tained it there­after.

“At half­time, I told the guys that we needed to come out and ex­e­cute and try to add an­other 20 points,” said West­lake head coach Tony Zac­carelli, whose team will face McDonough at 7 p.m. Fri­day. The Rams (1-5) lost 43-0 to Calvert in Week 6. “We knew it was go­ing to be a tough game from start to fin­ish. Lackey is very good and they’re well coached and we were go­ing to need to play hard all four quar­ters.”

West­lake opened the game with a 15-play, 65-yard drive that lasted over nine min­utes and ended when se­nior quar­ter­back Jalon Spencer con­nected with Kevin Hugh­ley on a 10-yard scor­ing strike on a fourth down play. The Wolver­ines con­verted on fourth down on two other oc­ca­sions on the open­ing drive and led 6-0 in a first quar­ter that ex­pired rapidly.

West­lake main­tained that mod­est ad­van­tage un­til late in the sec­ond quar­ter when the game evolved into a se­ries of big plays and sud­den mo­men­tum shifts. The Wolver­ines went up 12-0 when se­nior run­ning back Laquay Wash­ing­ton Jr. scored on a 58-yard run with just over four min­utes re­main­ing in the first half.

Lackey was forced to punt on its next pos­ses­sion, but the Charg­ers ben­e­fited from a for­tu­itous bounce that grazed off the leg of West­lake blocker Earl Spicer Jr. and the hosts re­cov­ered deep in West­lake ter­ri­tory. On the very next play, Mid­dle­ton plowed for­ward from 1 yard out and Dustin Berry nailed the ex­tra point to trim the West­lake lead to 12-7.

On the en­su­ing kick­off, the Wolver­ines re­gained the mo­men­tum briefly when Devin Wil­liams re­turned it 83 yards for a touch­down and Spencer con­nected with Hugh­ley for the two-point con­ver­sion and a 20-7 lead. But, Mid­dle­ton con­nected with Jonathan Brid­gett on a 34-yard scor­ing strike in the left cor­ner of the end zone with 14.8 sec­onds re­main­ing to re­duce Lackey’s deficit to 2014 at the in­ter­mis­sion.

“At half­time when we were only down one score I told the guys that we had to keep fight­ing,” Lackey head coach John Lush said. “West­lake is a very good team and they have so many play­mak­ers. We just were un­able to sus­tain good drives in the sec­ond half and even­tu­ally our de­fense got tired.”

West­lake may have sur­ren­dered the mo­men­tum just be­fore the in­ter­mis­sion, but the Wolver­ines re­gained it on their first play from scrim­mage in the third quar­ter. Fol­low­ing a short Lackey punt, Wash­ing­ton bounced off two would-be tack­lers in the back­field, got to the out­side and raced 45 yards down the left side­line for an­other touch­down to give the vis­i­tors a 26-14 lead.

“I just kept my feet mov­ing,” said Wash­ing­ton, who had been sus­pended two games ear­lier af­ter be­ing ejected from the opener against Friendly. “Once I got loose, I knew I could take it all the way. It’s def­i­nitely good to get back and make plays. I let my team down ear­lier, so I wanted to come back strong.”

West­lake added to its lead late in the third quar­ter when it marched 56 yards in eight plays and Wash­ing­ton tal­lied his third touch­down of the night on a 2-yard run. The Wolver­ines sealed the ver­dict mid­way through the fourth quar­ter when re­serve quar­ter­back Jeremiah Maxwell scored from 4 yards out on a keeper with just over five min­utes re­main­ing.

Af­ter the Charg­ers turned the ball over on downs on their last pos­ses­sion of the game, ju­nior quar­ter­back Gary Boykin han­dled the chores for West­lake’s last drive. Boykin, who has an ar­ti­fi­cial lower right leg, led the Wolver­ines to two first downs be­fore time ex­pired.

“It’s great to see Gary get out there and play,” Wil­liams said of Boykin. “He works hard in prac­tice and he’s a great team­mate. He’s been on the team for three years with us and we all want him to get out there and do well.”

STAFF PHOTO BY TED BLACK

West­lake High School se­nior quar­ter­back Jalon Spencer awaits the shot­gun snap on the Wolver­ines’ first drive on Fri­day night at Lackey. Spencer led West­lake on a 15-play, 65-yard drive that ended with a touch­down pass to Kevin Hugh­ley and the Wolver­ines even­tu­ally up­ended the host Charg­ers, 38-14.

West­lake High School ju­nior quar­ter­back Gary Boykin looks to the side­line for a play from the coaches late in the fourth quar­ter of Fri­day’s game at Lackey, a 38-14 Wolver­ines win. Boykin, who has an ar­ti­fi­cial right lower leg, guided the Wolver­ines to two first downs on the drive be­fore time ex­pired.

STAFF PHO­TOS BY TED BLACK

Lackey High School quar­ter­back Robert Mid­dle­ton awaits the shot­gun snap in the first quar­ter of Fri­day’s home game against West­lake. Mid­dle­ton threw one touch­down pass and ran for an­other, but the Charg­ers were up­ended by the vis­it­ing Wolver­ines, 38-14, in the SMAC clash in In­dian Head.

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