The West Stokes defense found a way to slow Blaze Acord to defeat North Surry 21-12 in the season finale.
Acord has rushed for more than 200 yards in a few games, but the Wildcats pinned the running game back to 34 yards on 14 carries, less than three yards per rush.
Greyhounds Offensive Coach Tanner Hiatt said that the plan Friday was to use the run attack against the Wildcats, but that was dependent upon the line being able to block effectively. Lanes for the Greyhound running backs were not as open and defensive line plays were not at their best for the Hounds.
Early in the first quarter Keyshawn Rawley hit Brock Reynolds and drew blood but the Wildcats kicker missed the extra point. The score was then 6-0.
North Surry quarterback Austin Handy then connected with Shawn Dehart to get the Hounds’ first points on the board, tying the game 6-6. The Hounds missed the extra point as well.
As a whole, the Greyhound offense had 216 yards. Coach Danny Lyons credited the Wildcats for playing great defense.
Zack “Monster” Manley for the Wildcats spent most of his night shutting down the passing and rushing attack of the Wildcats offense. Wildcat Brett Whittington also seemed especially eager to help out shutting down the rush and pass attack that has been exceptional this year for the Hounds. The entire defensive line of the Wildcats mostly dominated at the line of scrimmage.
Offensively, it seemed the tables had turned. Rashad Witherspoon, Brock Reynolds and Austin Long put up great numbers for the Wildcats offense, which got 268 total yards.
The Greyhounds’ Dakota Goss and Shawn Dehart led the defensive effort, but the team could not seem to get their defense off the field.
The Wildcats, the defending 2A state champions, got off to a terrible start on the season, going 1-4 including a loss to the Mount Airy Bears to open Northwest Conference play. After that, the Cats finished the season 6-5 overall.
This win put North Surry, West Stokes and South Stokes in a three-way tie for second place at 5-2 in conference play.
The Hounds opened the season with six straight wins and finished 8-2 overall.
North will still make the 2A state playoffs, but will be the second seed from the Northwest as the win gives West Stokes the top seed for the playoffs.
After the 6-6 first-quarter tie, the Hounds took the lead on a trick play. Handy gave the ball to Acord, who threw to Josh Cox for a 29-yard touchdown catch for a 12-6 lead.
The point-after try again failed.
Then with about a minute and a half left in the second quarter, the Wildcats scored and made a two-point conversion for a 14-12 lead.
North couldn’t score in the second half, and the Cats added an insurance score for a 21-12 margin.
The teams will face each other again this week, as West Stokes will host a first round playoff game against North Surry on Friday night.