McGREGOR — Behind a physical running game, the West Trojans stayed undefeated in District 9-3A Div. I with a 34-10 win over McGregor Friday night.
Trojan quarterback Nathan Gerik rushed for 207 yards on 19 carries, while his backfield mate Preston Johnson had 149 yards on 27 carries. After starting strong in league play, West head coach David Woodard said he was proud of his team’s effort and execution on the road.
“We have a lot of leadership and experience on this team,” he said. “We get everyone’s best shot, but hopefully they get ours’ as well.”
Gerik, who missed two games earlier in the year, hit the edge on quarterback keepers all evening, and either broke several tackles or outran the Bulldog defenders. The senior signal caller had seven rushes over 15 yards.
“It is huge to have him back,” Woodard said. “He is a three-year starter, and he is really good, with a really good supporting cast.
Early on, it appeared it might be a tighter affair. After falling behind 7-0, McGregor sophomore quarterback VeAndre McDaniel found senior wide receiver Cameron Hill on a 51-yard touchdown pass midway through the second quarter, and the score was knotted at 7.
However, two plays later, Gerik raced 36 yards on a quarterback keeper to put West (5-2, 3-0) back on top. To make matters worse for the Bulldogs, Hill was actually injured on his scoring catch, and he did not return the rest of the game. Up until that point, he was McGregor’s leading receiver.
West added another touchdown on a 7-yard run by Johnson, but McGregor (4-3, 1-2) had the last points of the first half, as kicker Hector Aviles nailed a 31-yard field goal with 32 seconds remaining before intermission.
In the first half, McGregor was hurt by at least two dropped potential touchdown passes.
West dominated the line of scrimmage for most of the contest, but they especially did in the second half, as the Trojans held the Bulldogs to three first downs.
“They moved the ball early,” Woodard said. “We made some good adjustments at halftime.”
Next week West returns home to take on Whitney, while McGregor is at Teague.
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