Whittell football opens with big win over Mammoth
Dalton Warswick rushed for 137 yards and two touchdowns and Isaiah Womack and Corey Huber each scored twice to lead the Whittell Warriors past the Mammoth Huskies 44-0 in the high school’s 8-man football opener.
The Warriors started right where they left off over the past three seasons under fourth-year head coach Phil Bryant. The Warriors have lost just five times in 36 games since Bryant took over the program.
While the score looks like the Warriors rolled to victory, Bryant was thrilled with his defense and not so much the offense.
“They say that early in the season defenses are ahead of offenses, that was really the case for us,” Bryant said. “Our defense put us in great scoring position repeatedly. I thought our defensive coordinator Doug Patton did a great job of mixing blitzes, stunts and a variety of fronts that kept them off balance and created turnovers and miscues. That put us in great position to score. Even though we scored 44 points, I didn’t feel our offensive production was what it should have been. The good part is that everything that happened is correctable this early in the season.”
Bryant said defensive end Gunnar Barnwell stood out for the defense with big hits on special teams and a team-leading nine tackles. He assisted on four others.
Also for the Warriors (1-0) on defense, Warswick had six tackles and assisted on four others, Connor Huber had five and four and Nic Buchholz had four and four.
Womack played quarterback for the first time Friday night and Bryant liked what he saw. Womack rushed for 65 yards on eight carries.
“Isaiah had never played quarterback before Friday and ran the team pretty well,” Bryant said. “That gives us two options at quarterback with Isiah and Trent (Dingman).
Varsity veteran Huber had 50 yards on seven carries and Warswick needed just 11 totes for his game-high rushing total.
“I’m really happy with our running back production,” Bryant said. “Cory has been starting on varsity for four years and Dalton our fullback, he has been really effective. When our O-line gets tuned in, I think it’ll be great.”
The Warriors are off Friday before they “host” Eureka Friday, Sept. 8, at Tahoe Middle School while their home field is being remodeled.
The Warriors will play four “home” games at the middle school, Friday, Sept. 29, vs. Coleville, Friday, Oct. 13 vs. Mineral County and Oct. 26 against Smith Valley.
“We’re happy with the win and it keeps us rolling along in the tradition we’ve established,” Bryant said. “Hopefully we can maintain that defensive presence as our offense continues to get better as we settle on starters and get some continuity in play. It’s a good start for us and will keep us in the hunt for a (1A Northern) league title.”