West Trojans topple Wildcats with powerful first half
The West Trojans arrived at Wildcat Stadium Friday night and wasted no time to make a bold statement.
With a mix of speed and power, the Trojans (5-1, 3-0) stunned the Whitney Wildcats from the get-go to claim a spot atop the district standings with a 49-21 victory.
The Wildcats now sit at a 4-2 season and 1-2 in district with a crucial match-up this Friday night in Teague (4-2, 2-1).
The showdown against West was billed as one of the top battles for the week in Central Texas, but the Trojans seemed to catch the Wildcats off guard. Whitney had an uncharacteristic slow start and failed to find any momentum until the second half of play.
But by that time, it was too late.
West came out of the gates and established a bruising rushing attack that consisted of physical play from the offensive line and multiple ball carriers. Seven handoffs on the first series quickly resulted in a 7-0 lead for the Trojans.
The West defense then seized the opportunity and grabbed an interception on the Wildcats’ first play from scrimmage. The Whitney defense stood tall and mustered up a goal-line stand, but when the Wildcat offense lined up again, quarterback Devin Wilson was immediately sacked for a safety.
The Trojans’ defensive line continue to pressure and stuff the Wildcats, while the offense rattled off three consecutive first-half touchdowns to put the score at 29-0 as the teams headed towards the locker room.
West added another touchdown in the third quarter before the Wildcats finally showed signs of life.
Returning from a knee injury, Whitney’s Wilson got his groove back with two straight completions to senior Clay Ritchers that resulted in the Wildcats first score.
The Wildcat defense responded and forced a four-and-out, and on the next series, Wilson hooked up with sophomore Kolby Tanner for a long reception that set up a 22-yard touchdown sprint from the sophomore quarterback.
With another touchdown reception from Ritchers in the fourth quarter, the Wildcats managed to outscore West 21-20 in the second half, but the Trojans’ first-half surge was too much to overcome.
West continued to grind the clock out with nearly 300 more rushing yards than Whitney and grabbing twice as many first downs.
Richter, a senior, finished the night with 105 yards and two scores, while Tanner ended up with a season-high seven receptions for 110 yards.
Wilson managed 219 passing yards and led the Wildcats in rushing with 44 yards on the ground.