Wildcats break gridiron skid with 21-0 blanking of Calhoun
By MICHAEL MURRAY
EDISON, Ga. – They say that all things must come to an end. Generally, when people hear this phrase, they think of positive things coming to an end. Fortunately, this is not always the case.
The Schley County Wildcats football team exemplified this fact on August 26 after traveling to Edison, Ga. To deal a 21-0 defeat to the Calhoun County Cougars and bring to an end the team’s long skid that had encompassed the entirety of the 2015 season. The victory marks the first match in which the Wildcats have come out on top in the team’s past 11 contests and leaves the Wildcats at 1-1 thus far in 2016.
First year Wildcat head coach, Darren Alford, spoke with the Times-Recorder following the team’s exciting road win.
“We put forth a really good effort in the game,” he said. “Everyone played hard. We got in there and built up a 13-0 lead really quick. It was a back-and forth defensive battle then until the fourth quarter when we scored one more touchdown…”
Alford went on to praise the Wildcats’ defenses in the victory, saying, “Our defense only gave up 62 yards. I feel like we’re getting better each week and I always knew that this team had a lot of potential… It sometimes takes the offense a little while to get moving, but we’re making progress each day.”
As Alford stated, the Wildcats came blazing into the contest, determined to put an end to the team’s streak of poor luck. Their determination paid off almost immediately, as the Schley crew amassed a 13-0 pad in the first quarter with two touchdowns and an extra point.
Schley struck again in the fourth frame, breaking the plane once more for the team’s third touchdown of the match, followed by a two-point conversion to bring the team’s tally to 21 points at the game’s conclusion.
Schley’s Marquell Sims caught one touchdown pass from stand-in quarterback, Zykievious Walker, while the other two scores were rushed in by starting quarterback, Will Barry, and running back, Clint Sellars. Calvin Sims added the two-point conversion run in the final frame.
C. Sims set the pace for the team’s rushers with 37 yards gained on six totes, followed closely by Tra Sampson, who added another 32 yards on six carries. Sellars added 31 yards on five attempts and Tyree Hawkins piled on another 30 on five carries. Alec Harris, Barry, Landen Harris, and Demarco Cross each contributed ground to the Wildcats’ 174 total rushing yards.
Barry connected on five passes for the ‘Cats, with Walker on the receiving end of three. Reid Ragsdale and M. Sims each pulled in one of Barry’s passes as well. Walker topped off the Wildcats’ six total passes with the touchdown connection to M. Sims to bring the ‘Cats’ tally through the air to 91 yards.
On the other end of the ball, the team’s defense was on fire, with 11 team members contributing multiple tackles to stall the Cougars’ progress.
Johnathan Thornton led the charge for the Wildcats with five solo tackles and one assist, followed closely by Harris with four solo stops and two assists. Dartavious Napper and Walker each contributed three solo tackles, followed by Sampson, Sellars, Christian Arnett, and Jake Hall, with two apiece. Cross and Wade Montgomery each brought down Calhoun runners as well.
Walker and Arnett helped the team by adding sacks to the team’s stats. Napper pulled down the team’s only interception of the match.
The Wildcats will take a week off to prepare for their upcoming match in Milledgeville on Sept. 9, a battle against the Georgia Military College Bulldogs for the team’s third test of the season. The Wildcats will return to Ellaville on Sept. 16 to open region play against the Hawkinsville Red Devils.
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