Washington’s Warriors defeated Lexington, 35-13, last Friday night at Washington.
The game meant the difference in finishing second in the district behind Millwood and hosting a first-round Class 2A playoff game or finishing third and going on the road for the first round of the playoffs.
With the victory, the No. 7 Warriors will host the Lindsay Leopards at 7 p.m. Friday.
Meanwhile, the ‘Dawgs, 6-4, will travel to meet the Coalgate Wildcats (9-1) at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
Lexington was ready from the start and nearly drove the length of the field on its opening drive. But, on a fourth-and-goal play at the one-yard line, quarterback Toby Prevost was stopped by a tremendous goal-line stand by the Warriors.
Trevor Stuever scored Washington’s first touchdown.
Washington eventually led 28-0 at the end of the first half.
“We had to make some adjustments on offense,” Washington Coach Brad Beller said at halftime. “We had to adjust to what they were presenting on defense. We hadn’t seen that defensive front. We had to make some adjustments to their coverages and we had to try and figure that out. But, our defense started playing better which gave our offense that opportunity to make those adjustments.
“That gave us time to do what we needed to do. I think we started tackling better and our offensive line started to take over in the second quarter. I think the biggest thing right now is we just need to continue to play well. We need to be consistent and continue to push forward. We don’t need to be complacent on offense. We need to hammer it down and do what we do best.”
Spaulding had a tremendous first half and that fact wasn’t lost on Beller.
“He’s explosive,” Beller said. “If you give him a crease, he’s going to find it. He’s good enough to get into the secondary and make people miss. He’s a strong runner and just a great overall running back.”
Washington started the third quarter by marching down to the Lexington 37. After a couple of false starts backed the Warriors to the 48, receiver Marc Turbyfill caught a pass to the 25. After Stuever took the ball to the 7, Spaulding bulled his way in for another score, making it 35-0 Washington.
Lexington got in a groove, though. Prevost scored on a 24-yard run in the third quarter but the kick was no good, making it 35-6. Cottrell caught a 10-yard touchdown pass from Prevost with 19 seconds left in the third and the kick from Isreal Trejo was good that time, making it 35-13.
Lexington head coach Dale Berglan was impressed with Stuever and Spaulding.
Overall, Berglan seemed pleased with this team’s spirited effort despite the defeat.
“With technology today, we could delete those six minutes of film and say it was a heck of a ball game,” Berglan said of the six-minute span right before the half.
“We took the opening kickoff and drove down the field. Washington made a great goal-line stand to stop us. We thought we were across the goal-line on the second play. But, we didn’t get the touchdown and they did a great job. The first quarter was going to tell us how it was going to go. We held them on one drive. But, in the second quarter, they got in the groove. They got in a rhythm and got their running game going.
“They were hitting us up the middle. I told the guys at halftime that this game doesn’t end our season but next week’s does. Let’s get better for next week. So, we went out and we found our rhythm and we were able to move the ball.
“Washington gives you lots of looks. They are just so good up front and they have a lot of team speed. Toby made some things happen as did a lot of others and we made it a ball game. Yeah, if you take those six minutes away from the second quarter, it’s a 14-13 game. But, unfortunately for us, that’s not how it works. We leave feeling good about our effort getting back into the game. But, we’re upset we let one get away from us. We just got beat by a very good football team tonight.”
Cottrell had six receptions for 55 yards and a touchdown. He also intercepted the pass to stop a Washington drive. Cottrell said Lexington is ready for the playoffs.
“We came out and we were fired up,” Cottrell said. “It was scoreless in the first quarter but we let ourselves down in the second. We came out in the second half and did well. I think we played a good half of football and that should bode well for us in our playoff game against Coalgate. If we can come out and play good football for all four quarters, I think we could win the game. We just need to give 100 percent effort every play and we should put up a lot of points.”
Bulldog Notes: Lexington Head Coach Dale Berglan nominated Toby Prevost for Offensive Player of the Week. Prevost was 16-26 passing for 142 yards and one touchdown. He also ran the ball 12 times against Washington for 80 yards and another score.
Prevost was also nominated for Defensive Player of the Week by Berglan. Prevost had six big tackles and was a force. Blake Dunaway graded out at 85 percent and was nominated by Berglan as the Offensive Line Player of the Week.
The Defensive Lineman Player of the Week nominee was Ryan Hailey, who had two tackles and played exceptionally well, Berglan said.