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Red Hawks make Bulldogs first victim in 27-7 victory

Posted: October 20, 2012 2:28 p.m.
Updated: October 22, 2012 5:00 a.m.

Who could have blamed Westwood for looking a bit confused as they took the field for the final play of the game on Friday.
All the Red Hawks’ offense had to do was take one snap, kneel with the ball and seal a 27-7 win over Camden. But junior quarterback King Davis looked to his bench for instructions and to make sure the right personnel was on the field for the “victory” formation.
You can understand why this was a bit of a problem since it was the first time Westwood ever had to line up in such a manner.
The first-year program scored the initial victory in school history as they scored the final 24 points against a reeling Bulldog squad which fell to 2-7 overall and 0-4 in Region 4-AAA play. The loss wiped out CHS’ faint playoff hopes while assuring the Dogs a sixth-place finish in the conference, regardless of what happens in Friday’s season finale at Chapin.
After he watched his players file out of the locker room following the loss, Camden head coach Jimmy Neal talked about what was a bitter pill for the Bulldog program to swallow.
“It just got to where we were doing some good things and we were moving the ball,” he said, “then, one play got us here and another play got us there. Then, all of a sudden, we just didn’t get it. It was a breakdown here and a breakdown there.
“In the first half, it looked like we were going to take the game over, but we didn’t do it.”
For the night, the guests piled up 343 yards in offense on 61 snaps with junior tailback Christian Brown rushing for 112 of those on 16 carries. Junior quarterback Davis King threw for 128 yards and a touchdown on a 12-for-21 performance .
Camden managed 227 yards in offense with sophomore quarterback Ross Hough throwing for 178 yards on a 14-for-32 night with his second touchdown pass in as many starts. He also led the Dogs with 41 yards rushing on 10 carries. The hosts ran for only 49 yards on 25 carries.
Hough was victimized by several dropped passes while several times, he was under duress from the WHS pass rush. Neal said his southpaw signal-caller took another step in the right direction on this cool evening at Zemp Stadium.
“Ross really looked good out there. I thought he did some really good things,” Neal said. “We had some dropped ball, and people made mistakes and missed assignments. He was getting hit when we had people open, but that’s just part of it. It’s part of the game.
“I was pleased with Ross and the way he played tonight.”
It was a 51-yard Hough to Cedric Cook scoring pass, on the first play of Camden’s second possession of the game, which gave the Dogs a 7-3 lead --- following Nelson Semple’s PAT kick --- with 2:55 left in the first quarter.
The Red Hawks opened the scoring on the night’s first series which opened with a 34-yard Brown carry to the CHS 36. The guests got to the 20, but no closer and had to settle for a 40-yard field goal from freshman Brandon Howard.
After going with Davis at quarterback for the first three series and coming away with three points, WHS went to sophomore Diamond Williams. With Williams calling the signals, the Red Hawks went from a pass-first offense to one which stayed on the ground.
Williams would carry on three of the first four plays, netting 26 yards. An eight-yard Anthony Douglas run had an extra 15 yards tacked onto it by a personal foul call against Camden. Needing to pick up big yardage on third and 11 from the Bulldogs’ 23, Westwood went back to Davis who zipped a scoring pass to Adonus Lee, on a slant pattern, which the sophomore turned into the game-winning touchdown and a 10-7 Red Hawk lead with 7:42 showing on the first quarter clock.
“We expected the run game that they gave us,” Neal said of Westwood’s switching quarterbacks. “We were expecting that diamond set more than the I, but it’s still the run game. It was still the stuff in between the tackles with the sweep. Our coaches prepared very well for this game.”
The Bulldogs would then punt on fourth and one from their own 43 as WHS took control of the ball at its own 22 following a 36-yard Charlie Nash punt.
Getting runs of 16 yards from Williams and Brown, the Red Hawks move to the CHS 35. Another 16-yard carry, this by Miquelle Canady, put the ball at the 19. Four snaps later, on fourth and 11 from the 20, Howard was called on again, this time for a 37-yard field goal which had plenty of distance as the lead grew to 13-7 with 1:53 left in the first half.
A 35-yard kick return by Dontrell Miller put Camden at its own 45. A Hough to Alexx Cooke pass turned into a 13-yard hook and lateral as Cooke flipped the ball back to Miller. A 13-yard Hough carry set the ball at the WHS 30 with 33 seconds to go before intermission, but linebacker Avry Harris squashed the threat with an interception at his own 22 with 19 ticks left in the first half clock.
“We just thought that we had to execute better,” Neal said when asked of any halftime adjustments. “We had some things we wanted to do, perimeter-wise, that we worked on in practice and had done well. We just needed to execute better … we botched some things up.
“We had a good plan offensively and defensively for this game.”
Camden opened the second half with a three and out and punted on a fourth and one from its own 45.
Taking over at their own 41, the Red Hawks followed up a 16-yard Davis to Williams pass with Brown taking a handoff from Davis and going inside before bouncing to his right and going down the Camden sidelines for the 25-yard touchdown run and a 20-7 lead with 10:10 left in the third quarter.
Camden, which managed just 91 yards in offense after halftime, would get a stop from its defense which forced a punt after WHS took over at the Bulldogs’ 29 following a fumble. But a three-and-out gave the ball back to the guests which used a 33-yard Davis to Vyncint  Smith --- who got away with a push on the play --- pass to set the ball inside the one, setting up a scoring plunge from Canady which all but put this one out of reach at 27-7 with 5:31 left in the third.
Camden would have one last scoring threat as another defensive stop gave the offense the ball at the Dogs’ 29 with 2:29 left in the contest.
Hough completed four of his first six pass attempts on the drive with a 31-yard strike to Cook setting the ball at the WHS 21 with a little more than a minute left. But this series was halted with 35 seconds left as the Red Hawks took over at their own 20 and hastily tried to line up in the victory set.
Neal said he liked some of what he saw from his defense, which turned aside several Red Hawk scoring threats.
“I was pleased with our defense,” he said. “They put us in some pretty good spots and they battled; they didn’t give up. They forced a couple field goals and kept us in the game.”
With Friday’s game being played for nothing more than pride, Neal said he anticipates having a good week of practice under what could be considered trying circumstances.
 “I think the character of our guys is going to come through,” he said. “I’ll be shocked if they’re not there and coming out to practice and get better. I’ll be absolutely shocked if we don’t.
“They’ve done it the whole season; they’ve given it everything they’ve got. They’ve practiced hard and played hard. I just think they’re going to do it again.”

Bulldog Bites: Friday night was the 20th year reunion of the class of 1992. Among those who came to Zemp Stadium for the reunion was Derrick Barnes, the leading ground gainer on the Bulldogs’ 1990 state championship squad … Both benches were warned by the officials about play getting “chippy” in the second quarter. That came after a Westwood player was ejected from the contest. The 30 yards in penalties the young man received took the guests out of field goal range before halftime … Cook was on the receiving end of eight Hough aerials for 118 yards while Miller had the other six for 60 yards to account for the passing yardage.

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