The Westfield offense set a record this season with over 400 points scored. The Westfield offense averaged over 40 points per game this season. So, naturally it would be the offense that carried the Hornets to the State Championship game for a second year in a row, right? Wrong! It was the Westfield defense that lead the way to the Hornets 28-7 victory over Deerfield Windsor Friday night. The Gang Green defense forced six turnovers, and even scored a touchdown themselves. Overall, it was a dominating performance by the Westfield D.
The Westfield offense started off the game and after a quick first down, the drive stalled and they were forced to punt. The Westfield defense quickly showed they were ready to play though on Deerfield’s first drive. Deerfield RB/WR Aaron McNutt took a handoff and tried to race to the edge of the Westfield D, but couldn’t quite get there because Ben Murphy was there to meet him and force a fumble. The ball was picked up by Tucker Moody and returned 38 yards for the touchdown. The Hornets had seized the momentum they desperately needed and led 7-0 at 9:07 of the first quarter.
After another strong defensive effort by Westfield that forced a Deerfield punt, the Hornets finally saw their offense come to life. Hornet FB Josh Jenkins took the handoff and ran 47 yards to the end zone to give Westfield a 14-0 lead. The two touchdown lead stood for the remainder of the first quarter.
The second quarter showed more defensive dominance from the Hornet D. Westfield forced punt after punt, and forced another turnover with a Reagan Waller interception. Josh Jenkins also added another long TD from 87 yards out that gave Westfield a 21-0 lead late into the second quarter. It wasn’t until a Austin Fallaw 19 yard TD catch with just 12 seconds left before halftime that the Knights finally got on the scoreboard. At halftime, the Hornets led 21-7.
The second half started off with a long sustained drive from Deerfield that ate up over 7 minutes of the third quarter. The Knights looked primed to score until Knights QB Tyler Lowe lobbed one over the head of his receiver in the end zone and Giles Amos came out of nowhere to make the diving interception in the end zone. This became a theme for the rest of the second half.
The Deerfield offense was able to move the ball down the field for most of the third and fourth quarters, but three more interceptions thrown by Lowe to Tanner Westbrook, Gavin Edmondson, and another to Giles Amos killed those drives. Westfield added a final touchdown with 32 seconds remaining by Khory Holiday to finish off Deerfield once and for all.
It was a great night for Westfield to get revenge on their rivals from Albany. They will now have their chance to win a second straight state championship. The Hornets will face off against the Pinewood Patriots Saturday night at 7:30 at Anderson Field at Mercer University. If you can’t make the game, just tune into the Brannen Outfitters Pregame Show at 7:00pm, followed by kickoff at 7:30pm only at midgasports.net.
Here are some extra tidbits on some things we noticed:
Guys that impressed:
John Walker Moore
Moody Law Firm Big Hit of the Game: Giles Amos
Walker Insurance Play of the Game: Gavin Edmondson’s one-handed interception
Sonic Drive-In Offensive Player of the Game: Josh Jenkins
CW Williams Defensive Player of the Game: Westfield Defense
David Ragan Ford Special Teams Player of the Game: Griffin Elmore