Two teams that combined to score 90 points in Week 1 could provide fans with plenty of offensive firepower Friday when Woodstock makes the short trip to River Ridge.
Woodstock (1-0) will go on the road for the second consecutive week after earning a 41-35 win at Sequoyah last Friday. The Wolverines held a 28-14 lead in the fourth quarter before the Chiefs rallied back to tie the game late.
Georgia commit David Daniel’s 70-yard kickoff return helped set up the go-ahead touchdown for Woodstock in the final few minutes.
“I think every team right now is seeing an area for improvement in special teams,” Woodstock coach Brent Budde said. “Special teams takes live reps to get better.”
Daniel was an integral piece in all three phases for Woodstock.
The 6-foot-2, 185-pound senior finished with three rushes for 31 yards and a touchdown while adding one catch for 11 yards. On defense, he finished with nine tackles and one blocked punt, which set up another short touchdown for Woodstock.
The Wolverines were breaking in a new starting quarterback in Preston Lawrence, but it was the ground game that led the way. V’ontae Hampton finished with seven carries for 57 yards, while Sebastian Moss finished with six carries for 29 yards. Each found the end zone.
Defensively, Woodstock linebacker Carson Gray finished with 12 tackles, four tackles for loss and two sacks.
River Ridge (1-0) opened by scoring the fourth-most points in program history. After averaging 14.4 points per game in 2019, the Knights broke out in a 49-21 win at Lassiter.
Running back Amehre Morrison enjoyed a career-best performance with 225 rushing yards and four touchdowns on only 14 carries.
“We have to know where their tailback is,” Budde said. “They’re going to be pumped up after Week 1, just like we are.”
Quarterback Carson Lathem was efficient in his first career start, finishing 9-for-15 for 176 yards with touchdown passes to Andrew Bingham and Jackson Head.
Defensively, linebacker Liam Bruton led the Knights with 12 tackles while Hunter Deriso and Dylon Persad recorded sacks.
“To be honest, it was a little bit of what we expected defensively,” River Ridge coach Mike Collins said. “We have a lot of returning guys on that side of the ball, and they’re really starting to buy into our philosophy.”
Since its first season in 2009, River Ridge has yet to defeat an in-county opponent. After the Knights’ season-opening performance, optimism is rising that 2020 could be the year they end that streak.
“I don’t allow myself to think that way, and I can’t tell you whether our kids think that way or not,” Collins said. “We knew out of the gate these next couple weeks would be challenging. I appreciate the fact that there’s some energy around the program and in the community right now, but my focus will always be making the River Ridge program better this week than it was last week.”