Bears crush Mount Olive

Published 12:20 am Sunday, August 23, 2015

DAILY LEADER / TERESA ALLRED / West Lincoln's defender Matthew Allred (28) pushes through Mount Olive's offensive line to make an quarterback sack Friday night at Perry Miller Field.

DAILY LEADER / TERESA ALLRED / West Lincoln’s defender Matthew Allred (28) pushes through Mount Olive’s offensive line to make an quarterback sack Friday night at Perry Miller Field.

The West Lincoln Bears opened the season at home Friday night with an easy 33-6 win over the Mount Olive Pirates.

Prior to the opening kickoff, the Bears, led by first-year Head Coach Charlie Jackson, entered Perry Miller Field in the traditional Bear Walk. Victory was in the air as the Bears scored their first points of the night early and held the advantage throughout the game.

“I am very proud of our guys and the effort that they gave on the field,” said Jackson. “We still have things to work on and develop, but considering that we do not have the luxury of an offensive and defensive system that was implemented prior to the start of August, I would say that our young men have responded well.”

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In the first quarter, West Lincoln’s defense came out strong after Lofton Sills’ 44-yard opening kickoff, which put the Pirates on the 18-yard line for their opening drive. The Bears managed to contain the Pirates on three drive attempts but the Pirates decided to go for it on fourth down. West Lincoln defensive lineman Dillon Griffin met the Pirates’ quarterback in the backfield for the stop at the 29-yard line.

On West Lincoln’s first offensive drive, the Bears put six points on the board on a 10-yard run by Jayden Rushing. The Bears’ defense stopped the Pirates on their second offensive possession to get the ball back.

West Lincoln continued their offensive rhythm in the second drive and marched down the field on a 32-yard run. The Bears scored again on a 25-yard run by Chance Lacking. Patrick “Rolling Bear” Nottingham’s kick was successful on the extra point attempt to put the Bears ahead 13-0 at the end of the first quarter.

West Lincoln’s defense continued to dominate in the second quarter and held Mount Olive scoreless. Offensively, the Bears added another touchdown on a six-yard run by Jayden Rushing to close the first half of play with the Bears leading 19-0.

In the second half, the Bears’ defense got into the scoring action as Dillon Griffin landed on a Mount Olive fumble in the endzone to increase West Lincoln’s lead to 25-0.

On Mount Olive’s next offensive series, West Lincoln’s Nathaniel Addison intercepted a pass to put West Lincoln’s offense back on the field. Chase Owen caught a 15-yard touchdown pass from Rushing to give the Bears a 31-0 advantage. West Lincoln was able to capitalize on a two-point conversion and stretch the lead to 33-0.

Mount Olive finally managed to get on the scoreboard in the fourth quarter on a 70-yard reception which ended up being the final points of the night as West Lincoln secured a 33-6 victory.

The Bears finished with 188 total yards on offense, led by Jayden Rushing’s 82 yards and followed by Chance Lacking’s 41 yards.

Defensive leaders for the Bears were Dillon Griffin with nine tackles followed by Lofton Sills’ eight tackles.

“West Lincoln came out and secured the lead early in the half and never really showed extreme signs of fatigue,” said Jackson. “Our summer conditioning really showed us positive results considering that we only had three cramps the whole night, and none of those locked up for extended periods of time. We struggled with getting the PAT snapped and down but we will fix that this week. I am very proud of our players. We will head into the practice week with plenty to build upon and things to correct. I would like to thank our community, teachers, and school faculty for their support. You truly were our 12th man.”

The Bears (1-0) will be seeking a second win as they travel to Hattiesburg to take on the Sacred Heart Crusaders Friday at 7 p.m.