By Josh Holland
For the Forsyth County News
West Forsyth’s defense had Forsyth Central pinned inside its own 5-yard line thanks to a pinpoint punt from Daba Fofana.
A quick three-and-out forced
Central to punt from their own end zone. The snap on the punt was high and the
ball bounced through the back of the end zone.
The safety gifted the Wolverines with a 22-17 lead, which they were able to cling to until the end of the game.
It was West Forsyth’s (2-5) first win in the region this season, as the Wolverines hosted Central (3-3), which suffered its second region defeat in a row after a double-overtime heartbreaker last week against North Forsyth.
Both teams scored with ease during the first few possessions of the game.
West received the opening kickoff and easily marched down to score off of an 11-yard touchdown run from Wesley Clark.
Central’s offense didn’t even have to take the field thanks to Jake Bretz, who returned the next kickoff all the way to the end zone to even the score just seconds later.
The Wolverines’ offense was unfazed and easily drove down the field, thanks to a 28-yard run from Fofana and a 34-yard catch by Casey Cowart.
Clark finished off the drive with another 13-yard touchdown run.
When Central’s offense finally took the field, they stalled and were unable to gain the first down, forcing a punt. West broke into the red zone with ease once again, but the Bulldogs defense was able to step up and force a 21-yard field goal.
Central fumbled on the kick return, which granted West great field position, but the Wolverines had to settle for another field goal, extending their lead to 20-7.
Eli Ruis helped Central break into the end zone with just under five minutes left in the first half to cut the West lead to less than a touchdown.
Central got the ball back again before halftime, but the clock expired while they were in the red zone due to poor clock management. They got the ball back after halftime, and managed to score a field goal to cut West’s lead to just three.
West struggled to find its feet offensively in the second half, which West head coach Shawn Cahill described as their inability “to get out of our own way.”
“We’d start doing some things and then we’d have some penalties,” Cahill said. “We’re a young football team, and that’s the kind of stuff we’ve been trying to work on all year.”
West’s only points in the second half came off of the safety with eight minutes left in the game. Central’s defense got the ball back but West’s defense was able to make a key stop on fourth-and-4 with 1:23 remaining, which allowed Drew Southern to run out the clock in victory formation.
Southern praised the team’s preparation earlier in the week for the win on Friday night.
“Monday through Thursday, we had a ton of energy in practice.” Saying that, “Everyone was upbeat and ready to get better.”
The Wolverines will take on a struggling Lambert team next week while Central will face last year's state champions, Milton.