WHS falls to LR after late surge

HOPKINS – The Westwood football team had played a solid defensive game for about 47 minutes Thursday night at Lower Richland stadium. The Diamond Hornets had fortune go their way in the final minute.

Backed up to their own 2-yard line with about a minute to go, Lower Richland went straight to work. The Diamond Hornets quickly moved to midfield, and M.J. Smith’s 46-yard touchdown pass to Lamarion Pearson with 27 seconds left gave them a 24-18 victory over the Redhawks.

“That’s a play we’ve been working on for a while now,” Diamond Hornets head coach Marlin Taylor told Prep Redzone. “Marcus made a great throw, and Lamarion did his job and made a great play and got in the end zone for us.”

Besides the TD catch, Pearson had 137 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries.
Before that big play, Westwood’s defense had protected its 3-point lead for 19 minutes of game time.

Midway through the third quarter, Westwood quarterback Antwan Nelson stretched Carrington Carter’s screen pass to him into a 47-yard pass play. That play set up K’Shon Harrison’s 8-yard touchdown at the 7:39 mark to give Westwood a 21-18 lead.

Westwood held a lead for most of the game.

Carter’s 10-yard pass to Chase Simmons gave the Redhawks 7-0 two minutes into the game.

Smith’s 22-yard TD run at the 6:36 mark of the first cut that lead to 7-6, but Antwan Nelson’s 2-yard run four minutes later gave Westwood a 14-6 lead.

Two scores in the second quarter gave Lower Richland an 18-14 advantage by the half, a 10-yard run from Pearson early in the quarter and Tra’von Benson’s 2-yard run with 1:39 left in the first half.

“This wasn’t our best football by far. But I’m proud of the kids, proud of the effort, we just keep fighting every day and every week,” Taylor said. “My hat goes off to Coach O’Connell and Westwood, they played a great game plan.”

The Redhawks are the host team this year for the Battle of the Axe. Blythewood beat Westwood 53-8 last year. Westwood won it in 2019. The game was not played in 2020 and 2021 because of Covid. 

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