West Forsyth 23, Chattahoochee 15
West Forsyth 3 0 14 6–23
Chattahoochee 0 0 0 15–15
WF: FG Sherman 20, 5:16
WF: McConnell 20 pass to Reid (kick good), 8:43
WF: Reid 51 run (kick good), 2:34
WF: McConnell 10 pass to Wyman (kick no good), 9:52
C: Owens 50 pass to Hundley (Hundley run), 8:00
C: Owens 26 pass to Kinsey (kick good), 4:10
ALPHARETTA — After suffering two consecutive defeats to begin the season, West Forsyth finally righted the ship as they travelled to Chattahoochee on Friday night and secured their first victory of the young season, 23-15.
First year head coach Adam Clack and his Wolverines struggled to find consistency on the offensive side of the ball in the first half, holding only a 3-0 lead going into halftime. Despite the slow start, West quickly turned their fortunes around in the second half, putting up 20 unanswered points and forcing the Cougars into a difficult position.
Facing a 23-0 deficit in the fourth, Chattahoochee made a last ditch effort to turn the game around, replacing their starting QB with Sophomore Chase Owens in the fourth quarter. With only eight minutes left in the game, Owens put together two consecutive touchdown drives to bring the Cougars back within eight. But under the guidance of Senior QB Hampton McConnell, West successfully drained the last few minutes off the clock and stopped the potential comeback short.
"We weren’t executing very well at all in first half," Clack said. "But really, it only took some minor tweaking of the same plays that we had been running (in the first half) and it set up everything else for our offense."
At the forefront of West’s offensive rejuvenation was junior running back Austin Reid, whose production on the ground (5 carries, 91 yards, TD) and as a receiver (2 catches, 42 yards, TD) served as the spark that ignited the Wolverines during their second half surge.
Reid struck his first blow in the opening minutes of the third quarter on a 20-yard touchdown reception delivered by McConnell, putting the Wolverines up 10-0. After a missed Chattahoochee field goal, Reid showcased his impressive speed as he took a jet sweep handoff and raced 51 yards through the heart of the Cougar defense, scoring his second touchdown and increasing his team’s lead 17-0 with 2:34 remaining in the third quarter.
"In the first half, our defense came out great, but our offense was a little slow to start," Reid said. "We went over everything on the board at halftime, came back out, and showed them what we really had."
Both squads were hindered by self-inflicted mistakes throughout the game. West racked up nearly 100 yards worth of penalties during the game, making it difficult to sustain drives and capitalize on possessions. Conversely, a costly Cougar fumble in the closing minute of the third quarter squandered a potential scoring opportunity and allowed West to drive down the field and punch in their last touchdown of the night.
With his first victory as head coach finally behind him, Coach Clack noted the importance of appreciating the hard-fought success of a win.
"Nothing comes easy in this game," Clack said. "We opened with two tough losses to start the season and those games really got away from us. We didn’t play as well as we wanted tonight, but at the same time, you have to learn to enjoy the wins and use them to make you hungry for more."