New London no match for Highland
With the score 21-6 and Highland driving late in the second quarter, the Huskies were at a crossroads.
A touchdown would have been a huge momentum shift going into the break and the Huskies had the ball to start the second half.
Seniors Kody Wood and Jacob Wilson connected with an 11-yard touchdown.
“We were able to get a touchdown right at the last second of the half,” said head coach Tony Johnson. “We moved the ball about 70 yards in the last minute. I attribute that to Kody. He found the right receivers. Receivers ran the right routes. The offensive line protected him. That was a great drive at the end.”
Then to start the second half, Highland scored on its opening drive for a 35-6 lead. A continuous clock from there helped the Huskies coast to a 43-6 win.
“We are really excited about starting District play at 1-0,” Johnson said. “That was our goal. Obviously our goal is to win all District games. We started out on the right foot. Our kids came out and played a quality football game.”
It was a balanced attack for Highland with 130 yards passing and 289 yards rushing.
“I’d like to say that we can do either-or,” he said. “It is basically what the defense is going to give us. We like to stay as balanced as possible. Friday night we were able to get outside and run the ball, so we stuck with that.”
Quarterback Wood had a team-high 151 yards rushing.
“Kody had a great game,” he said. “He was able to get to the edge a lot running the football. He had a fantastic game.”
As a dual-threat, he has thrown for 387 yards and picked up 282 yards on the ground for the season.
“He’s definitely a weapon,” he said. “Having him come back and be familiar with the offense … there is a lot more we can do with Kody than a younger kid. He’s a threat with his feet and his arm. He does a great job of film study and reading defenses, so he knows what to expect.”
Senior Jesse Hootman did damage on both sides of the ball. On offense he made four receptions for 57 yards. On defense he made a team-best seven tackles to add to his team-leading season total of 25.
“Jesse is a solid individual,” he said. “He is our defensive leader. He moves around, flies around. He does a great job getting everyone in the right position. He plays tailback and running back for us.”
Johnson said preparation for New London was like any other opponent. He has a lot of respect for the program.
“A lot of their kids have varsity experience,” he said. “We don’t take anyone lightly.”