Warriors got Battled off the Mountain
Football is a game of inches.
Fortunately the Whittell Warriors (3-3 overall, 3-2 league) found that out the hard way in a 26-7 loss at Battle Mountain (6-0).
“The whole game we were about an inch off,” Warrior coach Larry Reilly said.
If the 21-yard pass to Chauncey Lane was one step further down the field, the Warriors would have been right in the ball game.
That inch and four turnovers proved too much for the Warriors to overcome. On three occasions, Whittell either dropped a pass or fumbled the ball inside the 30-yard line.
Despite the four miscues, the Warriors strung together numerous drives and moved the ball into scoring position on several occasions. They even took a lead into halftime, but the miscues caught up to WHS in the third and fourth quarters as the Mustangs scored 20 unanswered points.
The Mustangs tallied 14 points in the third quarter on a pair of runs to erase a one-point deficit and go ahead for good. Rick Haworth scored both touchdowns on runs of 16 and five yards.
In the final quarter, Battle Mountain added an insurance touchdown when Whittell was caught changing personal.
“I thought they were just going to take a knee and run out the clock,” Reilly said. “I was trying to get some of the kids in who hadn’t played during the game. I think we only had 10 guys on the field.”
Without a safety to stop the play, Manuel Andrade ran 65 yards for the final score of the game.
Battle Mountain went ahead 6-0 in the first quarter on Haworth’s first touchdown.
But the Warriors answered in the second quarter when Luke Forvilly raced 16 yards for Whittell’s only score of the day. Forvilly then added the extra point to give the Warriors the lead at intermission.
Despite the loss, several Warriors had superb days with Keith Truswell leading the way. The senior signal caller completed 50 percent of his passes for 167 yards. Fellow senior Joel Warnick caught six passes for 122 yards to lead all receivers in the game.
“Keith was throwing the ball very well,” Reilly said. “And Joel at tight end had a great day catching the ball.”
The loss drops the Warriors’ league mark to 3-2 and into a possible third-place position, pending the outcome of Carlin’s game.
The next two games for Whittell are crucial to its playoff aspirations. Independence and Lovelock at home are must-wins for the Warriors if they have any hope of holding onto third place.
“The best scenario for us is to win both of those games,” Reilly said. “And play one playoff game up north and one south before a potential showdown with Battle Mountain again.”
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