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Alabama High School Athletic Association
Boys 4A Varsity Football Fall 2015 Standings
Round 1 - West Limestone at Saks
PLAYOFF BOUND: West Limestone beats Wilson to secure playoff spot
Posted: Friday, October 23, 2015 11:06 pm
West Limestone had to withstand one obstacle after another this season, making Friday’s 21-14 victory over Wilson that much sweeter. The victory locks up a playoff spot for West Limestone, which finished third in 4A Region 8.
The Wildcats overcame a grueling schedule, along with multiple injuries to key players to qualify for postseason. On Friday, West overcame a couple of untimely turnovers to grind out a hard-fought victory.
“It’s was perseverance,” said Cantrell. “We talked about having the desire, will, effort and dedication to win. We knew Wilson was going to make plays. We just had to make the final plays and we did.”
After Brock Delia scored on a 3-yard run to pull Wilson within a touchdown with less than three minutes to play, Brayden Clem recovered an onside kick for West and Reed Blankenship converted a third down a few players later to ice the game.
Blankenship and Chase Lancaster fought through various injuries during the season, as did other players on the team. Finally healthy, West Limestone has won five straight and nearly finished second in the region had Deshler not come back to beat Rogers Friday.
“We’ve worked all summer for this,” said Lancaster, who opened the scoring for West on a 1-yard plunge in the first quarter. “Coming in for two-a-days early in the morning, we’ve really put together a hard-nosed football team. Our offense was cranking it up and our defense was holding them. We’re looking forward to the playoffs.”
Blankenship, who played quarterback for most of the game, ran for two long touchdowns in the second half to give West Limestone a two-touchdown cushion for most of the third and fourth quarter. With West leading 7-0 midway through the third, Blankenship took a direct snap up the middle, cut left and raced down the visitor’s sideline for a 58-yard score.
“It feels great to come back and be able to help the team,” said Blankenship. “Once everyone is healthy, we really get rolling as a team. When we come out of halftime, we usually start tiring people. We jumped on them early and kept pounding it. That gave us the motivation to keep going.”
Blankenship scored on a 28-yard run to open the fourth quarter to give West a 21-7 lead. Wilson went three-and-out and the next series, but got the ball right back after Sean Smith recovered a fumble at the West 20. The Warriors drove to the West 7, but penalties and a sack drove them back to the 32-yard line, where they failed to convert on fourth down.
Larry Decatur scored Wilson’s other touchdown late in the third quarter on an 18-yard run. Decatur led Wilson with eight carries for 52 yards and a score.
Blankenship had 13 carries for 144 yards and two touchdowns for the Wildcats. Chase Lancaster carried the ball 21 times for 97 yards and a score.
West Limestone’s defense held Wilson to 186 total yards and got sacks from Jesse Rose, Tanner Walker and Cole Smith.
“This second half of the season, we’ve been playing some really good football,” said Cantrell. “We’ve been playing some really good defense.”
West Limestone (6-3, 5-2) hosts Ardmore next Friday while Wilson (5-4, 4-3), which also qualified for the playoffs despite the loss, hosts Hatton.
Coach Jordan Cantrell
Click here for West Limestone Football History AHSFHS