After falling to Urbana of Frederick County in its season opener last week, 17-0, the Westlake football team went back to the drawing board and responded with vengeance versus visiting Thomas Stone on Friday night.
Westlake took a 20-0 halftime lead and scored 23 more in the second half en route to the 43-0 home victory.
The win was the first ever for first-year head coach Marlon Curtis, who took over the reins for former head coach Dominic Zaccarelli when Zaccarelli stepped down after 19 seasons.
“After the Urbana game we prepared [as coaches] on Sunday and had strong practices all week, I thought the guys responded well. I could tell in school how focused that they were,” Curtis said. “We went back to the basics and everyone played their positions well.”
The win was even more special for senior linebacker Marquel Lee, whose father Corey, Westlake’s linebackers coach, turned 40 on Friday.
“We knew we had to bounce back this week, we stayed focused and the defense was all over the ball,” the younger Lee said, whose team poured a tub of water on his father after the win. “This win was real special; we had to win it for dad.”
Westlake (1-1, 1-0 SMAC) will take on host McDonough at 7 p.m. Friday. The Rams shut out La Plata by the same 43-0 score in Week 2 to go to 2-0 on the season.
Senior running back Darrell Reeves led Westlake with 122 of the team’s 152 rushing yards on just 12 carries and a touchdown.
Reeves had two touchdowns in the game, both coming in the second quarter. He broke for a 28-yard rushing touchdown, coming two minutes into the period, and took a 45-yard punt return back for six more points just 2 1/2 minutes after the first score.
“It all started in practice. We were a different team this week, we knew what we had to do,” Reeves said. “I was able to set up my blocks and I saw huge holes. If we play like we did tonight, we could be a dangerous team.”
Curtis added, “DJ [Darrell] is a major threat in the backfield and on special teams and he did his job tonight. He looked for his blocks and the offensive line opened up some holes for him.”
Junior quarterback Antwaine Carter completed 3 of 9 passes for 61 yards and a touchdown. The touchdown came off a 31-yard pass to senior wideout Desmond Holly early in the fourth quarter. Carter also had two rushing touchdowns.
Though Stone junior quarterback Kieron Morsell rushed for 81 yards on 15 carries, the Westlake defense knocked him down numerous times and forced him into throwing two interceptions, one of which went for a 25-yard touchdown from senior Bruce Tyler to cap off the scoring.
Tyler also had a reception for 20 yards in the game. Senior Dashaun Cummings had the other interception for the Wolverines.
Westlake also recovered three Stone fumbles on the night and held senior running back Ray Dotson to 45 yards on 20 carries.
“Our defense was aggressive and our line brought pressure all game,” said Westlake senior defensive end Roderick Caine, who had three sacks. “We were motivated from the loss versus Urbana, so we wanted to take care of business.”
Stone (0-2, 0-1) will clash with host North Point at 7 p.m. Friday. North Point is coming off a 26-0 win over Lackey on Saturday.
Westlake 43, Thomas Stone 0
Thomas Stone 0 0 0 0
Westlake 7 13 8 15
W Carter 5 run (Stephenson kick), 6:04
W Reeves 28 run (kick failed), 2:02
W Reeves 45 punt return (Stephenson kick) 4:29
W Carter 1 run (Lee pass from Carter) 5:29
W Holly 31 pass from Carter (Napoleon pass from Carter) 2:10
W Tyler 25 interception return (Stephenson kick) 5:28
TS (6 first downs, 38-127 rushing, 10 passing, 4-3 fumbles, 5-45 penalties)
W (7 first downs, 33-157 rushing, 61 passing, 1-1 fumbles, 4-30 penalties)
Top individual performers
Rushing TS: Morsell 15-81, Dotson 20-45; W: Reeves 12-122, Carter 8-28
Passing TS: Morsell 1-6-3 10; W: Carter 3-9-0 61
Receiving TS: Thomas 1-10; W: Holley 1-31, Tyler 1-20, Napoleon 1-10