On a night that hovered around the freezing point, it was a hot second half that led the Westfield Hornets to a 45-15 victory over the Brookwood Warriors. A field goal late in the first half from Griffin Elmore rejuvenated the Hornets offense as they came out of the locker room and outscored the Warriors 35-12 in the second half. With the win, Westfield moves onto the semifinals next week at the Hornets Nest against their rival, the Deerfield Windsor Knights.
The first half was a defensive battle between the two teams that only had two losses on their records between them. Brookwood actually led the majority of the first quarter, after John Stauffer connected on a 32 yard field goal to open the scoring. It was not until a Ryan Fitzpatrick 38 yard touchdown run with 1:42 left in the first quarter that the Hornets took the lead.
The second quarter was a mirror image of the first as both teams struggled to score points against the two stingy defenses. It took a great two minute drive before halftime by Westfield to finally tally some points on the scoreboard. QB Ryan Fitzpatrick mixed the pass and run as he moved his team into field goal position with 5 seconds left before the half. Griffin Elmore trotted out and knocked through a 35 yard field goal with .8 seconds left, and gave Westfield momentum going into the locker room with a 10-3 lead.
Coming out for the second half, Westfield received the kickoff and used that momentum they had seized in the first half to add to their lead. On the third play of the drive, FB Josh Jenkins took the quick handoff and raced to the end zone for a 55 yard touchdown. The Hornets lead had quickly gone from a 7-3 lead to 17-3 in the matter of less than one minute of actual game time.
Westfield continued to add to that lead as the third quarter wore on, and scored on their next drive as Tucker Moody ran in a touchdown from 16 yards out to give the Hornets a 24-3 lead midway through the third quarter. A late touchdown response by Brookwood on a fourth down pass from Kullen Wells to Peyton Latmore made the score 24-9 at the end of the third quarter. Gavin Edmondson blocked the extra point keep the Warriors at 9 points scored.
Any idea of a fourth quarter comeback by the Warriors was quicklyput to rest, as Westfield added three more touchdowns while only allowing one on the last play of the game. Josh Jenkins wrapped up his good night with two fourth quarter touchdowns, and Tanner Westbrook added one of his own. Westfield closed the game with a 35-12 flurry, and left the Hornets Nest with a 45-15 victory over a quality football team in the Brookwood Warriors.
Westfield will now move on to face the Deerfield Windsor Knights in the GISA AAA State Semifinals next week at Marvin Arrington Stadium. The Hornets will of course be looking to avenge their only loss this season at the hands of the Knights earlier this year in Albany. Gang Green needs the stadium packed and loud, as they will feed off that energy against a well-coached Deerfield team. If you can’t make the game though, just tune into the Brannen Outfitters Pregame Show at 7:10pm, 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: Conner Cawthon
Walker Insurance Play of the Game: Griffin Elmore kicks 35 yard FG right before halftime
Sonic Drive-In Offensive Player of the Game: Josh Jenkins
CW Williams Defensive Player of the Game: John Walker Moore & Wade Walker
David Ragan Ford Special Teams Player of the Game: Griffin Elmore