Westfield’s long win streak dating back to last August came to an end Friday night against the Deerfield-Windsor Knights. The Hornets trailed the entire game, and despite a valiant effort to come back, they lost 35-25 to their longtime nemesis.
From the moment the game started, Westfield appeared to be sleep walking. Deerfield-Windsor started the game on offense and meticulously moved down the field. Facing a third down and long situation, the Knights were able to pick up a first down before going into score and take a 7-0 lead. The third down conversion would become a theme the entire night as the Westfield defense had a tough time in getting off the field.
So, after trailing 7-0, the Hornets needed a response. Unfortunately, the response wasn’t exactly the one Hornet faithful were looking for. Tanner Westbrook fumbled the ball over to the Knights, setting them up with pretty good field position. Deerfield-Windsor took possession of the football, but Westfield’s defense looked to be up to the task. However, faced with another difficult down situation, the Knights converted a 4th down all the way inside the Westfield five yard line. They went in to score shortly thereafter, and took a 14-0 lead at the end of the 1st quarter.
If trailing 14-0 wasn’t bad enough, Westfield continued to stumble as this time Josh Jenkins fumbled the ball back over to the Knights early in the 2nd quarter. This time there wasn’t a need for a third down and long conversion, as Deerfield was quick to add to their lead at 21-0 with 10:38 left before halftime. Westfield would once again fumble, Jenkins 2nd, but were able to keep the score at 21-0 at halftime.
The Hornets came out for the 2nd half and looked rejuvenated. Tanner Westbrook took a handoff from Ryan Fitzpatrick and rumbled into the endzone from 52 yards out to make the score 21-7 just two minutes into the third quarter. The Westfield D also looked like the break had given them new life. They were able to force the Knights to punt on their first couple of drive in the 3rd quarter. After a 30 yard FG from Griffin Elmore, the Hornets made the score 21-10 after 3 quarters.
The 4th quarter was when all the craziness began. Deerfield-Windsor was quick to score after converting another 4th down situation, and pushed their lead to 28-10. The game appeared all but over at that point with about 10 minutes left. Westfield stumbled around and put themselves in a 3rd down and 26 from their own 10 yard line. However, little did we know, this was just what Ryan Fitzpatrick and Giles Amos were waiting for. Ryan launched a bomb down the middle of the field and Giles ran underneath it and took it the rest of the way for the 90 yard touchdown. Jaws were dropped all over the stadium at that point as the Hornets had new life.
The excitement for the touchdown was even too much for the electricity at Webb Memorial Stadium as the lights went out on the visiting side of the field. Westfield had to wait about 20 minutes for the lights to come on, and to convert a 2 point conversion to make the score 28-18 with 8:51 left in the 4th quarter.
The excitement didn’t stop there however, as Giles Amos was able to recover the onside kick from Griffin Elmore. The Hornets rode the momentum and were able to score once again as Fitzpatrick found Amos from 5 yards out to make the score 28-25 Deerfield with 5:09 left. Things were starting to turn in the favor of the Green and Gold.
Deerfield-Windsor took the next possession and started to move the ball down the field. They were able to get into Westfield territory down to the 31 yard line before they were faced with a 4th down and 8. Coach Allen Lowe decided to trust his instinct and go for it. Quarterback Tyler Lowe dropped back and found a wide open Austin Fallaw down the middle of the field for a touchdown with only two minutes left. It was yet another 4th down and long conversion that finally did in the Hornets. The Knights were able to hang on and win by a final score of 35-25,
The Hornets unfortunately have no one but themselves to blame for this defeat. You cannot beat good teams by turning the ball over 4 times and allowing multiple 3rd and 4th down and long situations. Coach Jones will I am sure have his team working hard over the bye week to improve, and I would hope have these errors corrected in two weeks against Bulloch Academy.
Here are some extra tidbits on some things we noticed:
Guys that impressed:
Moody Law Firm Big Hit of the Game: Giles Amos
Walker Insurance Play of the Game: Ryan Fitzpatrick to Giles Amos for a 90 yd TD pass
Sonic Drive-In Offensive Player of the Game: Giles Amos
CW Williams Defensive Player of the Game: Wade Walker
Special Teams Player of the Game: Griffin Elmore