Westside wins shootout over TV
by John Conley
Westside survived a fourth quarter-turned-Wild West shootout on homecoming night.
The Renegades and Panthers combined for 44 points in the final period before WHS emerged with a 34-30 win at Clear Fork last Friday.
Mike Mullens ran for four touchdowns and 246 yards (187 in the second half) as the Renegades improved to 4-3.
“I’m excited for the win but disappointed in how we played,” said WHS head coach Darren Thomas.
It took a while for the Renegade offense to get cranked up. They were scoreless in the first half and turned the ball over twice.
“We hoped we would come out and play better than we did,” Thomas commented. “I don’t know if it was homecoming or what.”
Tug Valley (5-2) put up the only points of the first half with a 58-yard scoring drive in the first quarter.
Mikey Newsome’s 16-yard pass to Corey Baisden gave the Panthers a first down at the Renegades 24. The same combination connected on a six-yard touchdown pass with 3:10 showing.
Newsome threw to Aaron Muncy for the two-point conversion to make it 8-0.
Westside began to move the ball in the second quarter but one series died with a fumble and another with an interception.
“The offense only had 15 plays in the first half,” Thomas pointed out. “Every time we started to move the ball, we had a turnover.
“You can’t go out there and fumble or tip the ball and get it intercepted,” he added.
The Panthers drove to the Westside 10 just before halftime but missed a field goal attempt.
The Renegades got the attack going in the third quarter.
They rolled 65 yards for a tally on their first possession.
Mullens had a three-yard TD run to cut the margin to 8-6.
After forcing TV to punt, WHS went back to work.
Mullens had an 18-yard run to move the ball to the Panthers 42. A penalty moved it to the 27.
Justin Cogar passed to Dylan Newsome on third and long to moved the ball ot the TV 14.
Cogar ran it in from the two a few plays later to give Westside its first lead at 12-8.
The fourth quarter was all offense.
Dillon caught a 20-yard pass from Newsome for a Panther TD. Mullens broke loose for a 42-yard scoring run for the Renegades.
Tug Valley took its last lead on David Runyon’s two-yard run with 5:40 to to make it 26-22.
Mullens had a 10-yard touchdown scamper to put WHS in front.
Amid all the O, a play by the D proved crucial.
Bryce Robertson recovered a Panther fumble on the kickoff return at the 22-yard lie.
Mullens went 22 yards for the touchdown on the very next play, and Cogar hit Corey Bowles for the extra points. It was 34-22.
“That was a huge play by Bryce,” Thomas said. “If we don’t make that play, we might have lost tonight.”
TV scored the game’s final points on Newsome’s 10-yard toss to Tyler Conley with 2:04 to play.
Westside ran the clock out after that.
“We came out and executed a little better in the second half, and Mullens ran hard for us,” stated Thomas.
“I’m glad to get the win, but we seem to have a lack of focus right now,” he continued. “We should be getting better this time of season, and instead we seem to be getting worse.’
In addition to Mullens, the Renegades got 76 yards rushin gand 127 yards passing.
Hunter Walker had two receptions for 71 yards, and Bowles had four catches for 78 yards.
Runyon ran for 122 yards for the Panthers, and Muncy had 85 yards on the ground.
Newsome was 11-28 passing for 149 yards.
Nick Elswick led WHS in tackles with 16.
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