Wildcats Football Team Shows Signs of Improvement But Mistakes Keep Wildcats From Getting a Win Friday Against Lovejoy
The Wildcats Football Team looked much improved against Lovejoy Friday night (September 6) at Leopard Field in Lucas but the Wildcats mistakes kept them from getting their first win of the season. Lovejoy won, 34-27. For the second straight game, the Wildcats opened the game with a successful onside kick. Then the Wildcats moved crisply down the field. A 48 yard drive resulted in a touchdown with junior quarterback Kaden Wallace throwing a 6 yard touchdown pass to senior receiver Kylan Wade. The Wildcats led 7-0 with 6:07 left in the first quarter. After an unsuccessful onside kick, Lovejoy answered with a 47 yard TD drive. Back Austin King ran for a 2 yard touchdown. The score was tied at 7-7 with 3:01 left in the first quarter. Early in the second quarter, a scoring opportunity vanished for the Wildcats as the Leopards intercepted a Wildcats pass at the Lovejoy 2 yard line. Late in the second quarter, a pair of penalties helped set up a Leopards’ score. Lovejoy quarterback R.W. Rucker went into a slide at the end of a play and a Wildcats’ defender made contact with him. The personal foul penalty was followed immediately by an unsportsmanlike conduct call. The penalty yardage put Lovejoy on the Wildcats’ 10 yard line. Rucker then threw a 10-yard TD pass to his favorite receiver Reid Westervelt. Lovejoy was up 14-7 with 1:06 left in the second quarter. That was the score at the half. Early in the third quarter, a Wildcats’ drive stalled and kicker Brandon Zavala kicked a 29-yard field goal. The Wildcats trailed Lovejoy, 14-10. Lovejoy used a long pass play to pad their lead. Rucker again found Westervelt for a 40 yard pass completion and run. Lovejoy led the Wildcats 21-10 with 7:26 left in the third quarter. The Wildcats answered with a long drive of their own. Wallace threw his second TD pass of the night, this one to receiver Detrick Clayton. The Wildcats trimmed the lead to 21-17 with 3:55 left in the third quarter. In the fourth quarter, the Wildcats reclaimed the lead. An impressive catch by receiver Bryson Lacy set up the touchdown. Back Caden Davis covered the final 14 yards to the end zone for the score. The Wildcats led 24-21 with 11:56 to play in the fourth quarter. After the Wildcats’ unsuccessful onside kick, the Leopards went 50 yards in 46 seconds to take back the lead. King ran for his second short TD, this one from the 4 yard line and Lovejoy went up 28-24 with 11:10 left in the final quarter. Then momentum swung wildly one way and then the other. The Wildcats’ defense stopped a Leopards’ drive fairly deep in Wildcats’ territory. But a few plays later the Wildcats fumbled the ball right back to Lovejoy. Lovejoy added to their lead with one big play. Rucker ran 32 yards to the end zone for a touchdown. Even with a missed extra point, Lovejoy led 34-24 with only about 5 minutes left in the game. With urgency, the Wildcats moved the ball down the field but they were forced to settle for a field goal. Zavala hit the 25 yard field goal but it was nullified because Lovejoy had called timeout. Zavala made it a second time and th Wildcats trailed 34-27 with not much time left on the clock. The Wildcats last gasp onside kick was unsuccessful and the Leopards run out the clock. The Leopards celebrated their 34-27 win. Lovejoy is now 1-1 for the season while the Wildcats slip to 0-2. Both teams begin district play next week. The Wildcats travel to Terrell to play the Tigers next Friday night.