Trailing 16–0 in the second quarter, the Patriot Pioneers mounted their one and only scoring drive. That development only drove the Mountain View Wildcats to play that much harder.
Edward Ware passed for three touchdowns and ran for another, while the Wildcats’ defense limited their guests to one first down in the second half en route to an impressive 37–6 victory in their home opener Friday night.
“We stuck to our game plan; guys stayed focused and executed,” said Ware, who personally amassed 415 yards of total offense, compared to the Patriots’ 178 as a team. “They [the Pioneers] have some athletes and came to play. We made mistakes, but I definitely think we’re capable of making things happen.”
A nice fake into the line left Bishop Jones-Fowler alone behind the Patriot secondary and the junior’s pass was led perfectly for a 51-yard scoring strike and a 6–0 lead with 9:24 left. Early in the second quarter, Amari Walker out-jumped defender Jacob Carter in the right corner of the end zone from 15 yards out.
Two plays following Cody Rogers’ touchdown on a 5-yard quarterback sneak, Ware broke outside on a 71-yard run. The Pioneers’ Gabe Bigbee temporarily denied the Wildcats a score by driving Ware out of bounds at the 21-yard line. Two plays later, Ware found Akil Thomas open at the goal line for his third TD pass.
“He’s a great athlete; he can run; he can throw; understanding what we are trying to do. Just a weapon,” Mountain View coach Lou Sorrentino said of Ware.
The third quarter was a total nightmare for the visiting team from Nokesville. The Pioneers lost three straight fumbles in their territory to start the second half and saw one of their starting defenders knocked out of the game with a possible neck injury. While the player was able to move his limbs and body, he was taken to the hospital for a further evaluation.
“Our defense was dominant across the line,” said Mountain View defensive end Aiden Huntington, who had one of his team’s three fumble recoveries. “They can’t double-team me because we have [teammate] James Snead. We had them off-balanced all day.”
Huntington and his teammates want their Commonwealth District brethren to know that they are for real this fall.
“We just want everyone to know we are going to be dominant on defense and we have a lot of weapons on offense. So we can co-exist,” he said.
For the Patriots, Rogers showed a knack of escaping the frequent Mountain View pass rush, but saw a pair of long pass completions nullified by holding penalties. Teammate Jalen Stroman stood out defensively and also averaged 46 yards on his four punt attempts.
Next Friday, the unbeaten Wildcats (2-0) travel to Dumfries for a non-district matchup against Potomac. Sorrentino isn’t taking the Panthers or anyone else lightly.
“Can’t get complacent: tough people ahead of us,” he said.
MV—Bishop Jones-Fowler 51-yard pass from Edward Ware (kick blocked).
MV—Amari Walker 15-yard pass from Edward Ware (Alex Solorzano kick).
MV—John Sherry 36-yard field goal
Patriot—Cody Rogers 5-yard run (kick failed).
MV—Edward Ware 2-yard run (Alex Solorzano kick).
MV—Ike Daniels 2-yard run (Alex Solorzano kick).
RUSHING: Patriot—Cody Rogers 12-68, TD; Tim Baldwin Jr. 11-49; Justin Harris-Ayala 1-(-2); Jalen Stroman 1-(-6). RB—Edward Ware 12-127, TD; Mark Shelton 14-104; Payton Parker 3-22; Tyler Perry 4-11; Ike Daniels 4-9, TD.
PASSING: Patriot—Cody Rogers 6-13-0, 48 yards. RB—Edward Ware 11-15-0, 144 yards, 3 TDs.
RECEIVING: Patriot—Bryce Jackson 2-22; Jalen Stroman 2-14; Justin Harris-Ayala 2-14; Gabe Bigbee 1-17; Tyler Settle 1-5. RB—Bishop Jones-Fowler 1-51, TD; Akil Thomas 3-45, TD; Ike Daniels 5-24; Amari Walker 1-15, TD; Jordan Jackson 1-9.