Joshua Ford | Waccamaw Contributor
Waccamaw moved closer to clinching a playoff spot for the first time in four years, beating Academic Magnet 49-0 last Friday. The Warriors are now 6-3 (2-2) and are in a position to clinch a spot in the AAA playoffs next week.
“It starts in the locker room but it’s all at practice,” said fullback Kaisaun Grate. “Keep our heads right at practice, don’t get too big headed and think too much of yourself or think too much of the team. Just gotta go out and get it everyday.”
The Warriors put up 428 yards of offense on only 20 plays while holding the Raptors to 133 total yards. The defense continued to be great on third down, only giving up one conversion on ten tries.
“It was good,” said tight end and linebacker Tre Phillips. “We just had to get back on track in that first half and we got out there and did.”
Many players got to see the field throughout the night as the coaches wanted to see what their rotational guys could do.
“There’s a lot of kids that practice at a lot of positions on our football team,” said Warriors head coach Shane fidler. “We wanted to make sure everyone got in that second half.”
Grate is listed as a fullback, but he has played wide receiver, linebacker and even returns kicks.
“That’s just my special ability to the team,” Grate said. “Everybody’s got a certain job they gotta do. I do my job, everybody else does their job and we win.”
After a punt from the Raptors to start the game, Waccamaw scored on a first down touchdown pass. Junior quarterback Denson Crisler hit sophomore wide receiver Kam Green on a streak route out of the slot for a 64 yard score. The two-point conversion from Crisler to Phillips gave the Warriors a 8-0 lead with 4:12 left in the quarter.
Crisler was six of seven passing for 236 yards with three touchdowns to one interception on the night. Green led the Warriors in receiving with two catches for 117 yards and a touchdown.
After another Raptor punt, Waccamaw went on to score on their second play of the ensuing drive, a 24-yard run by senior Antonio Haggins who trucked a defender into the end zone, increasing their lead to 15-0 with a little over two minutes to go in the first quarter.
“I was really happy for Antonio Haggins,” Fidler said. “He’s been with me for three years and he’s always wanted to play running back. I’m so proud of him for scoring that touchdown. He deserves it.”
Junior running back Kaimon Skinner had 109 rushing yards on seven carries and two touchdowns. He got his first touchdown three minutes into the second quarter with a three-yard score putting Waccamaw up 22-0.
Later in the quarter, a Jayvion Simmons touchdown was called back due to penalty. However, on the next play, Phillips caught a screen pass and zig-zagged his way up the field for a 74-yard touchdown, extending their led to 28-0 with 3:46 to go until halftime. He scored on a similar play in the first quarter but a penalty thwarted it.
“It felt good,” Phillips said. “Real good since it was my first [offensive touchdown of the season] for real.”
Waccamaw scored again before the half on a 33-yard touchdown pass from Crisler to senior wideout Tyree Funnye. The halftime score was 35-0.
Waccamaw took no time at all to score, as their first play was a 49-yard rushing touchdown by Simmons. Waccamaw ran the same play they called earlier when Simmons lined up as QB, and this time the touchdown stood to grow their lead to 42-0 with 7:59 to go in the third.
The last score of the game came on a Skinner six-yard run with four minutes to play in the game.
“I feel like we ran the ball well. We had a good bit of passing yards so I’d say we passed well too,” Grate said. “Offensive line did their thing. 49-0 so we had to do something right.”
Waccamaw is looking to play their best game this Friday at home against Hannahan for senior night.
“We need to play our best game of the year, and then
let the playoffs settle as they may,” Fidler said. “Six wins is pretty good for Waccamaw. We’ll take that.”
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