Lamar crushes Ware Shoals in second round of 1A playoffs
By Drake Horton
It was a night of domination for the Lamar Silver Foxes this past Friday at home against the Ware Shoals Fighting Hornets.
After receiving a bye in the opening week, Lamar showed no signs of rust, crushing the Fighting Hornets 64-0, advancing the Silver Foxes to the third round of the 1A playoffs.
“We knew the opponent they are; we knew if we came out and played as well as we can play we would take care of business,” Lamar head coach Chad Wilkes said. “You know I am really proud of that; I feel like we are actually building something. We are playing better every week, practicing better every week, which is where it starts. I feel good right now; we are in a good position for this time of year, but it is going to get tougher for sure.”
It was a complete mismatch from beginning to end. Lamar scored 24 points in the first quarter, 24 points in the second quarter, 8 in the third quarter and 8 in the fourth quarter. But it was not just the offense that dominated.
The defense was just as good and it may have been even better than the 64-point offensive output. While the shutout was impressive enough, even more impressive was the fact that the Silver Foxes never gave up a first down.
“The thing for me about that in this game is we started playing all of our backups in the second half so we are talking about freshmen who just came up off of ‘B’ team who came in there and still didn’t allow a first down so that bodes well for the future,” Wilkes said.
Even when the starters went out and the reserves came in after halftime, the defense’s intensity never let up.
“We knew our starters should perform that well, but for our backups and our young guys, our ninth graders, to come in and keep that level and keep getting turnovers and making plays, that’s awesome, that’s exciting for me,” Wilkes said. “We were having a great time out there.”
The game got out of hand so quickly that the referees instituted a running clock in the second quarter while also cutting the halftime, third and fourth quarters to just 10 minutes each from the normal 15 for halftime and 12 for each quarter.
After forcing Ware Shoals to a quick three and out to start the game, Lamar needed only three plays for quarterback Cam Galloway to rush in from 15 yards out. From there it was like clockwork for the Silver Foxes offense.
On the next offensive possession, Jiaquell James scored on a five-yard touchdown run, his first of two touchdowns in the game, to put the Silver Foxes up 16-0.
Ronnie Abson wrapped up the scoring in the first quarter with a two-yard touchdown run of his own to increase Lamar’s lead to 24-0.
With the outcome of the game already obvious by the end of the first quarter, Lamar’s offense kept the pedal to the floor, scoring three more touchdowns, a 15-yard run, an 8-yard run and a 16-yard run to put the Silver Foxes up 48-0 by the end of the second quarter.
The second half did not have the point totals that the first half had, but it was not due to Lamar not being dominant.
The Silver Foxes were just as dominant in the second half as the first half and when looking at what they were playing with, it might even be more impressive.
Basically using an entire second string defense and offense, not to mention having a running clock and shortened quarters, Lamar’s defense was still as stifling, keeping the Fighting Hornets’ offense bottled up just as good as the first string did in the first half.
Lamar’s Derrick Higgins added to the point total in the third quarter, returning the opening kickoff for a 90-yard touchdown.
Freshman Davion Martin wrapped up the scoring for the Silver Foxes in the fourth quarter on a 32-yard run.
In total, the Silver Foxes scored eight touchdowns and converted successful two-point conversions on every score and they accomplished all of this by throwing the football only twice, once on a trick play and the other on a two-point conversion.
The one mistake Lamar had was a fumble late in the fourth quarter. If not for that the Silver Foxes might have scored another touchdown.
Lamar now goes on the road to take on Wagener-Salley.