Finally, Westview looks like Westview
Posted: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 12:00 pm
By MIKE HUTCHENS
After four games and one half of another of subpar play, Westview finally looked like … Westview.
Dominating the line of scrimmage while paving the way for Quan Williams to run for 179 of his 218 yards over the final two quarters, the Chargers exhibited the qualities of many past Martin teams after halftime in a 28-14 homecoming victory over Ripley Friday night at Graham Stadium.
The win was Westview’s second in as many District 13AA games and sends the Chargers into a bye week with a 3-2 overall mark.
More importantly, the manner in which Westview dominated Ripley in the third and fourth periods invoked memories of past good Martin teams and gives hope for the second half of the season that begins with a home game vs. perennial league powerhouse Milan Sept. 28.
“Overall, it was as good as we’ve played this season,” said Charger head coach Don Coady, who returned to the sideline after missing last week’s game with what he said was a mild case of pneumonia. “We finished (a game), and that’s something we hadn’t been doing.”
Westview gained 285 of its 365 total yards in the second half when it ran 17 more offensive plays (38-21) than the Tigers and outscored the visitors 21-7 to break a 7-all intermission deadlock.
The Chargers’ 28 points was a season-best, and the yardage far more than their 229.5 ypg through four outings beforehand.
Williams, who entered the contest with 324 yards on the ground in four previous games, had TD scampers of nine and 13 yards to cap scoring marches in the second half as the Chargers drove into Ripley territory in their first five possessions after the break — scoring three times.
His 218-yard effort included seven runs of 10 yards or more after the intermission, a 42-yard burst the longest of those gainers.
While Williams’ individual effort was indeed noteworthy, his impressive rushing totals could not have been achieved without the workmanlike efforts of linemen Ryne Reynolds, Chase Thweatt, Blake Moore, Josh Melton, Tyler McClure and tight-end Billy Killebrew in the trenches.
“We made a couple of adjustments blocking-wise at halftime, and our young guys up front are getting more comfortable every game,” Coady added, acknowledging the efforts up front. “They have a chance to be really good in time.
“And I thought Quan ran the ball awfully well in the second half, making some good cuts at times and moving the pile at others.”
Somewhat lost in the impressive offensive showing was a quietly-effective performance by the Westview defense that essentially allowed no points as the Tigers tallied on a fake field goal and a long interception return.
Linebacker Hunter Beal, the team’s leading tackler through four games with 42 stops, again was around the ball all night including consecutive hits behind the line to snuff out one Ripley drive at the end of the first quarter.
Bo Guest and Alex Insco also dropped Tiger ball carriers for losses, while Beau Kelly had an interception in the secondary and knocked down a couple of other passes in a solid outing for the Chargers.
In all, Westview held Ripley to just 191 yards — much of that second half total (85 yards) coming in the final two drives with the game essentially decided.
The Tigers made just one first down until the final five minutes of the contest.
“Defensively, I thought we did a good job of limiting their big plays,” Coady said.
After falling behind 7-0 when Ripley scored on a 36-yard fake punt run by Quadarreon Glass, the Chargers got on the board via their own special teams.
The first of several shanked punts by the Tigers’ Brice Hearn — who was pressured on the kick by Ty Brown — failed to make it back to the line of scrimmage, falling seemingly harmlessly at the 17-yard line after Ripley’s second possession.
An alert Landon Pitcher scooped up the free ball there and scooted untouched into the endzone for an easy score with the first of four Cal Bradshow tying the game at 7.
Williams’ touchdowns — the first at 9:18 of the third quarter, the second 52 seconds into the fourth — opened a 21-7 Westview lead before J.Q. Atkins stepped in front of a Matt Castleman pass and returned the Tigers’ second interception of the game 71 yards to paydirt to half the difference with just under nine minutes remaining.
A seven-yard quarterback keeper by Castleman — who took every snap after alternating with Ryne Vinson at the position in the first four games — sealed the verdict with a little more than five minutes to play.
EXTRA POINTS: One of the few negatives to come from the Charger win was the ejection of valuable two-way player R.J. Scott from the contest early in the fourth period after he received a personal foul. By TSSAA mandate, he must sit out Westview’s next game. …Vinson, who entered the season as the starting QB after holding that position last year, played receiver and had one catch and one rush in his first action at the position. Coady would not commit to who would be his starting quarterback in the Milan game. …Westview has now won six straight in the series, Ripley’s last victory against the Chargers coming in 1992. …Fullback Andrew Chavis got his first carries of the year, toting the ball nine times for 46 yards.
Published in The WCP 9.18.12