The Lee-Scott Warriors raced their way to their first win of the season, thrashing Springwood 42-7 on Friday night.
The Warriors came into this game knowing that if they could get the ball moving with their rushing attack, they would be in a good position to win — and that’s exactly what they did, racking up 317 yards rushing and four touchdowns.
“Extremely proud of these kids,” Lee-Scott head coach Buster Daniel said. “All year, we’ve played teams that have outmanned us. They never gave up, they kept working everyday, and it finally played off tonight.. We had one mistake that I can remember, and if you can play that well, you’re going to end up winning a lot of games.”
Lee-Scott moved to 1-4 on the season. The team's first four games were played against teams ranked in the ASWA's top 10, all undefeated entering Friday night.
But Friday, the Warriors came out of the gates swinging, recovering an onside kick before the first 10 seconds of the game had passes. Not long after that, they came up big with more special teams excitement after blocking a punt, which James Lyle returned for the touchdown early in the first quarter. Between this and Lee-Scott’s ability to get the ground game going, Springwood was in for a long night from the jump.
“They never gave up, they kept working everyday, and it finally played off tonight. We had one mistake that I can remember, and if you can play that well, you’re going to end up winning a lot of games,” Daniel said.
Lee-Scott isn’t working with the tools they expected to have at this point in the season after losing senior halfback John Allers against Glenwood, so they’ve had to lean a lot on quarterback Tate McKelvey to lead the way in the rushing game. McKelvey had a big game, going for 139 total yards and three touchdowns, but it was freshman running back Jonathan Meyers who turned some heads tonight.
Daniel admitted that Meyers has had moments this season where he’s flashed his ability, but hasn’t done so consistently. Friday night spelled the first time this season where Meyers was able to confidently and consistently carry the ball, tallying 96 rushing yards and one touchdown. The Warriors were able to spread the ball around more thanks to Meyers’ extended workload.
Between Meyers and McKelvey, Lee-Scott’s offense was on fire — especially in the third quarter. Coming out of the half, the Warriors scored three touchdowns in the span of seven minutes — all of which came on the backs of the Warriors’ duo. Receiver Jackson Harison also had a productive night for the Warriors offense, spreading the defense out with his ability to hit the edge on sweep plays.
“They somehow figured out our open spots,” Springwood halfback O.J. Tolbert said of the Warriors’ ability to consistently run the ball Friday night. “That’s one thing we’ve got to get better at is filling in our open spots.”
As is the usual case, Tolbert had a productive night and was the shining spot in an otherwise dismal night for the Wildcats’ offense. He picked up 94 total yards and one touchdown, while the rest of the team accounted for negative four yards.
“It’s not what we wanted. We’ve got to keep fighting. You win some, you lose some. We live to fight another day,” Tolbert said.
Daniel spoke highly of his opponents Friday, saying they’re well-coached and that “they’re going to win a lot of football games.”
At the midway point of the season, Springwood heads into a bye week before taking on region opponent Cornerstone on October 9.
As for Lee-Scott, they take their much-needed first win of the season into the more manageable half of their schedule, but a more manageable schedule doesn’t change the approach for Daniel and his team.
“We’re going to come back to work on Sunday. We’re going to watch film, correct our mistakes and go to work on Monday to get ready for Bessemer,” Daniel said.
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