Wilde Lake rolls out 200th win for DuVall Wildecats throw off Long Reach in second half, cruise to 35-13 victory

September 21, 1997|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

Wilde Lake coach Doug DuVall felt the chilly contents of the water bucket descend upon him with 48 seconds left to play at Long Reach. That's when Wildecats fans started chanting "200 wins, 200 wins."

The decisive 35-13 victory against the second-year Long Reach Lightning was DuVall's 200th coaching victory against 49 defeats.

It was achieved by an offensive line that overpowered the Lightning, and allowed the 13th-ranked Wildecats (3-0 overall, 2-0 league) to dominate the first half by running 31 plays to Long Reach's 16.

Long Reach (2-1, 1-1) managed to stay within striking distance at halftime, 14-0, only because its defense staged a goal-line stand at the end of the 14-play, 53-yard opening drive by Wilde Lake. The Lightning also got an interception from defensive back Willy Bhatia at their own 2-yard line in the second quarter.

The score could have been even closer at halftime. Late in the first half, Long Reach fumbled away an opportunity at the Wilde Lake 23 after Bhatia had stripped the ball from Quentin Collins on a punt return.

Long Reach finally scored with 6: 19 left in the third quarter on a 56-yard reverse by Chris Smith and reduced Wilde Lake's lead to 14-7.

"The momentum was shifting to us. We made two straight big hits and I yelled out to watch for the slot reverse, but our defensive end lost his containment," Long Reach coach Pete Hughes said.

Collins ran 60 yards on a third-down reverse to score and Dan Bayron converted on a run to make it 22-7.

"That play deflated us," Hughes said. "Coach DuVall is an offensive line specialist and they just pummel you. We didn't think their running backs were that fancy and had hoped to play better defense."

Collins, who made the game-breaking play, said: "We have the talent and Coach DuVall knows how to coach. We're undersized but we've got that team concept. 'Every player, every play' is our motto. Coach DuVall has such a history that we wanted to be part of that history today."

Collins was a bit surprised when the reverse was called. "We're not a razzle-dazzle team and I didn't think we'd run it, so my eyes lit up when I heard it called," Collins said. "I had to redeem myself for that stolen punt."

Bayron was the offensive bulldog for Wilde Lake, carrying 20 times for 123 yards and two touchdowns. Brandon Finney carried 17 times for 81 yards and one touchdown.

For Long Reach, Smith carried three times for 72 yards.

"Long Reach has speed and is dangerous. They can break it anytime. But our kids practiced as hard in the heat this week as any team we've had. Conditioning was a part of it," DuVall said.

Pub Date: 9/21/97

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