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ATWOOD (October 8) — West Carroll High School celebrated Senior Night Thursday and crushed the visiting Houston County Fighting Irish 41-14. The game and festivities were moved from Friday …
ATWOOD (October 8) — West Carroll High School celebrated Senior Night Thursday and crushed the visiting Houston County Fighting Irish 41-14. The game and festivities were moved from Friday night in anticipation of inclement weather.
Prior to kickoff, seniors in fall athletic programs were recognized on the field, joined by family members.
Football seniors include Dakota Saunders, Jack Barrow, Dylan Cox, Grant Green, Deven Rader, Tylor Smith, Jesse Mounts, Kaleb Brittain, Cody Wildridge, Nick Blankenship and Jacob Blankenship and managers Ashley Hughes and Virginia Knott.
Senior cheerleaders are Alyssa Kerby, Virginia Knott, Alyssa Butler and Kassidy Simmons.
Senior band members include Kaitlyn Price, Kiasia Barber, Lillian Neel, Emily Ramlow, Lainee Hawkins, Thalia Townsend, Abigail Wallace, Edward Humphries and Kassidy Simmons.
Senior cross-country runners are Wade Smith, Jaycan Martin, Clark Bradley, Noelle Roberts and Edward Humphries.
The Fighting Irish received the opening kickoff and started at their own 26. They managed a first down, but couldn’t get into West Carroll territory and punted out of bounds.
The War Eagles took over at their 34 and went three-and-out. Dakota Saunders’ punt went out of bounds at the Houston County 33.
The Irish kept the ball on the ground and earned a pair of first downs across midfield. West Carroll shut down the drive with big stops by Dylan Cox and Jay Long, then Seth Edwards sacked quarterback Andrew Meadow for a big loss on third down. The ensuing punt was caught by War Eagle Xander Moon near the 13 and returned to the West Carroll 40.
War Eagle Malik Lee ran twice for ten yards to move the chains then repeated for five yards. A fumble on the next play cost two yards, then quarterback Moon threw incomplete. Moon kept on fourth down but was stopped short.
The Irish took over at their 46 and went three-and-out as the game moved into the second quarter. Moon again caught the punt and returned it to the West Carroll 40.
Lee started the drive with a four-yard carry, then Moon kept for three. On third down, Lee pushed the pile forward six yards across midfield for a first down. Moon kept for 38 yards, then Tyler Shaddon went ten for the game’s first touchdown. Moon threw to Jack Barrow for two points, and the War Eagles led 8-0 with 9:21 to play in the first frame.
Houston County answered with a six-play drive capped by a 30-yard keeper by Meadow for the score. Colin Lyle ran for the two-point conversion, and the score was tied at 8-8 with six minutes remaining before intermission.
The Irish kickoff went out of bounds, and West Carroll started at the 35. Lee gained six, then Moon threw to Edwards for five yards and a first down. Lee ran for four, and an Irish offside penalty made it second-and-one. Moon connected with Barrow for 28. Moon went to the end zone on a keeper, but a personal foul penalty negated the score. On first-and-27 from the 34, Moon found Barrow again for 15. Moon threw again, hitting Jacob Blankenship for a 19-yard touchdown. Moon kept for two, and the War Eagles regained the lead, 16-8, with three minutes to play in the half.
Houston County started at the far 33 and soon faced third-and-six. Alexis Torres was stopped half a yard short by Cody Wildridge. Going for it on fourth down, Meadow kept and was taken down in the backfield by Wildridge and Hudson Bolton.
With a minute to play, West Carroll took over at the Irish 40 and managed a first down but soon faced fourth-and-seven at the 22. Moon scrambled in search of an open receiver before running. He was forced out of bounds at the 19 to turn the ball over to Houston County with 15 seconds on the clock.
The Irish fumbled on first down, and Barrow knocked the ball backwards before finally falling on it at the 9 with under seven seconds to play.
As time expired, Moon escaped multiple tackles before throwing to Blankenship for a touchdown. Jose Martinez missed the PAT, but the War Eagles led 22-8 at the half.
West Carroll received the second-half kickoff and started at the far 37. Lee gained five, then Moon kept for ten. Shaddon carried for eleven, then Moon threw to Dylan Cox for 14. The QB kept for eight down to the 13, then had to fall on a loose ball at the line of scrimmage. On third-and-two, Lee took it in for the score. Martinez hit the point-after kick to put the War Eagles up 29-8 three minutes into the third quarter.
Houston County responded with a six-play, 65-yard scoring drive ending with a 25-yard run by Lyle. Meadow was stopped short on the two-point attempt, and West Carroll’s lead was down to 29-14 with 5:16 to play in the third.
A short kick gave the War Eagles great field position at their 45. Moon kept the first snap for 28, but it was quickly fourth-and-three at the 20. Moon gained just enough to move the chains, then an Irish offside penalty made it first-and-five. Lee got the next carry for a 12-yard touchdown. The PAT was no good, and West Carroll led 35-14 with two minutes to go in the third.
The kickoff deflected off a Houston County player, and War Eagle Hunter Reynolds dove on it to give West Carroll possession at the Irish 40. Moon threw incomplete, then kept for four. Lee drove forward for the six needed to move the chains. On the final play of the third, Moon scrambled and threw to Edwards for four yards. Moon was stopped for no gain on the first play of the final frame, but gained seven on the next try. Lee then went 19 for the score. Another missed PAT made it 41-14 with just over ten minutes to play in the contest.
Saunders kicked deep to pin Houston County at the 19. The Irish steadily drove down the field, but time ticked away quickly on all running plays. After converting multiple fourth downs, they faced a fourth-and-ten at the West Carroll 15 with 22 seconds left. Torres was stopped after a short gain by Reynolds with eleven seconds left.
Jaxon Mims took over at QB for the War Eagles and took a knee to seal the win.
West Carroll (4-2, 2-1) hosts Lake County Friday for a region contest. Kickoff is 7 p.m.