Mt Pleasant News
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Wash Journal   Fairfield Ledger
Neighbors Growing Together | Nov 24, 2017

Warrior football falls just short in shootout

Aug 29, 2017

By Andy Krutsinger, Mt. Pleasant News

 

BUSSEY — WACO and Twin Cedars traded blows all night long on Friday but the Warriors came up just one punch short of a knockout.

Twin Cedars clawed back from an early 28-8 deficit to clip the Warriors on a late touchdown and win the game 60-56.

The WACO running game exploded out of the gate, netting four touchdowns in just the first quarter. Calvin Battle had a 55-yard touchdown run, a 32-yard touchdown run, a five-yard touchdown run and a couple of two-point conversions to help the Warriors spring to a 22-8 advantage.

Elijah McGhoan added to the lead with a 10-yard touchdown run to make it 28-8. A 13-yard score from the Sabers cut the lead to 28-14 and that’s where it would stand after one ultra-high scoring period.

Battle darted to the end zone for a 17-yard touchdown run to give WACO a seemingly comfortable 34-14 lead but two straight scores from Twin Cedars cut the advantage to 34-28 before halftime.

Twin Cedars scored on two rushes in the third quarter to take their biggest lead at 44-34, which had WACO’s backs against the wall, but McGhoan returned the ensuing kick-off 70 yards to the end zone. Nik Coble found Jalen Collins on the two-point conversion and the Sabre lead was back down to 44-42.

The Warriors retook the lead on a 26-yard pass to Matthew Leichty early in the fourth quarter. Twin Cedars snatched the advantage back with a 40-yard run but WACO went right back on top on a four-yard run by McGhoan and it was 56-52.

The Warrior defense, however, wasn’t able to keep Twin Cedars out of the end zone in the final minutes. The Sabres punched in a four-yard touchdown run to steal back the lead and the Sabres escaped with the 60-56 victory.

Despite the loss, WACO running backs ended with very impressive stat lines. Battle went for 166 yards and four touchdowns and McGhoan added 124 yards and two scores. Hunter Donaldson had 50 yards in the win and Collins finished with 23.

Coble went 7-16 with 108 yards and a score. His favorite receiver was Leichty, who caught three passes for 62 yards and a touchdown. Battle added 38 receiving yards to his big day and Collins had eight.

Defensively, Donaldson led the team with 8.5 tackles. Collins had eight tackles and Leichty had one fumble recovery, the only turnover of the game.

WACO fell to 0-2 with the loss but don’t count the Warriors out just yet. They’ll have the full roster back soon and have a favorable matchup this Friday, Sept. 1. WACO will host Tri-County, a team that lost its first two games by a combined total of 109-0.

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