Updated Fri, Aug 30, 2013 11:54 pm
The Wahama White Falcons continued to build the momentum they created last year and came out performing like true state champions in their season opener at home against Fayetteville. They outscored the Pirates, 33-0, in just the first half, which is a greater deficit than last year’s final of 35-7. The Pirates converted in the second half, but Wahama finished on top, 60-20.
On the offensive side of the ball, the White Falcons executed their running game efficiently. They converted their first possession of the game into points on a handoff to fullback Colton Neal, who carried it in from 47 yards out. Neal’s second touchdown came in the second quarter when he cleared the endzone thanks to help from his blockers and an accurate pass from quarterback Hunter Bradley.
Bradley also proved that he is capable of running the ball and that he can contribute more than just a good arm. In the final seconds of the first half, he converted a 20-yard rushing touchdown, increasing Wahama’s momentum going into halftime.
Neal had two carries on the night for 67 yards and two touchdowns, while Bradley was 5-for-22 and threw for 99 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Kane Roush also contributed a touchdown to Wahama’s first half lead. He had 10 carries on the night for 134 yards.
Fayetteville missed crucial opportunities throughout the game, passing up on open receivers, not completing low-pressured passes and making unnecessary penalties. Its energy increased in the second quarter and created a scoring opportunity when quarterback William Fenton ran it into the red zone but a holding penalty brought it back, torching all momentum.
Dalton Dempsey contributed two touchdowns and 76 yards for the Pirates. Fenton completed 19-of-20 and threw for 166 yards, and Tasheem Saunders rushed for 138 yards in 17 carries.
A crucial component to Wahama’s blowout win was its tough defense and ability to convert on fourth down. However, the White Falcons struggled in the kicking game with missed extra points, which is something that could win or lose a game against tougher components including next week’s opponent, Trimble.