After leading by just eight entering the fourth quarter, West Forsyth broke the game wide open with 17 unanswered points to beat Milton on the road 31-6 on Friday night.
“First region game of the season so we knew we had to come out with a win,” West wide receiver Thomas Arundale said. “This was a big game. There’s only five games in the region so we knew it was a must-win already and that’s what we did, we played our hearts out.”
Kiernan Hamilton led the Wolverines’ offense to 351 total yards, with 225 yards coming in the second half. The senior went 27-for-40 for 280 yards and four touchdowns while also adding 36 yards on the ground.
“I was beyond impressed with our team’s effort, attention to detail, and grit out there tonight,” West head coach Adam Clack said. “That game was anybody’s ball game midway through the third quarter. Our defense was just playing relentlessly and our offense kept coming and we started to break a few.”
These two teams played an evenly matched first half as West (5-1) totaled 126 yards of total offense, compared to 95 for Milton (2-4) on their way to 7-3 halftime lead.
But the second half was a different story.
West seemingly scored at will in the second half, putting together four scoring drives on their first five second half possessions.
“We knew we had them where we wanted them in the first half but we just couldn’t seem to punch it in,” Arundale said. “You saw towards the fourth quarter we really started hammering them.”
Arundale was one of Hamilton’s two favorite targets on the night, catching eight passes for 68 yards and a touchdown, all of which came in the second half. Ben Bresnahan led the Wolverines in receiving, however, with eight catches for 109 yards and two touchdowns.
“We were just taking what they gave us,” Hamilton said. “Obviously don’t make mistakes. We didn’t have any turnovers. We just kept pepperin’ them, throwing short passes, runs, and just kept moving down the field.”
The Wolverines’ defense put together another excellent performance in this game, limiting the Eagles to 206 yards of total offense while keeping them out of the end zone. Wesley Ross’s fourth quarter interception added the cherry on top for this defense’s stellar night.
“They stepped up the entire game,” Clack said. “They’ve been playing that way all year. Sometimes the score isn’t indicative of how a defense plays. The offense can put them in a bad spot, or there’s extra possessions in a game, or just one play here, one play there, and it’s 14 points. This defense has been playing with a lot of heart and a lot of effort all year long.”
West will travel to Forsyth Central next week, and if they continue to play the way they’re playing, Clack likes his team’s chances.
“They just gotta continue to believe that our best football is still ahead of us and that the process of hard work and attention to detail is what’s getting them to this point.” Clack said.” We’re 1-0 in the region and that’s it. There’s still four region football games to go and we know we can’t waste a practice. Hungry and humble, man, hungry and humble.”