By Andrew B. Adler
by Chike Nwakamma
Sep 20, 2012 | 700 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
By Andrew B. Adler

Staff Writer

DALLAS Two games into the season and it is already gut-check time for the Woodland Wildcats.

Standing front and center of his players who endured a 49-0 beating by the East Paulding Raiders Friday, Wildcat coach Vince DiLorenzo questioned each and every one of them regarding whether they had the desire to practice and play hard the remainder of the season. DiLorenzo gave them until Monday’s practice to search deep for their answer.

“Just because we’ve played two of the strongest teams in our region to open the season, does not mean that our other eight opponents are going to roll over for us,” he said. “These teams want to win as much as Allatoona and East Paulding did.”

DiLorenzo’s truthful assessment of his team effort thus far?

“We were never in last week’s game or tonight’s game,” he admitted. “All we can do now is get ready for New Manchester.”

What was most disturbing about Woodland’s effort was that the Raiders hardly broke a sweat offensively, whereas Woodland spent much of evening just trying to cross midfield.

East Paulding needed just four plays on its very first possession to score its first touchdown. Three plays to score again on possession number two. Four plays on possession number three to make it 21-0 after the first quarter. The Raiders needed a total of three offensive plays in the second quarter to make it 35-0 at halftime.

“Losing is losing,” said DiLorenzo, “no matter if a team takes one play or several plays to score.”

East Paulding’s Kamani Thomas had touchdown runs of 18, 80 and 34 yards. Running mate Kyler Neal’s touchdown runs were of 80 and 34 yards.

“We got some early breaks and we were able to score quickly,” Raider coach Chuck Goddard said. “We just kept on rolling after that. To Woodland’s credit, they never quit no matter what the score was.”

Yet, to add insult to an already decided contest, the Raiders’ Marcus Gilbert needed just 13 seconds to return the second-half kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown and a 42-0 lead.

Fortunately for the Wildcats, high school’s equivalent of the mercy rule was in effect throughout the second half, possibly keeping East Paulding from duplicating its effort against Woodland that occured six years ago at the Bone Yard. The score then was 70-0.

The mercy rule — having a running clock throughout the second half — came in to play when Miles Hemphill kicked his fifth extra point for the East Paulding Raiders at 5:15 of the second quarter and the Wildcats having been shut out after 24 minutes of play.

1 2 3 4 T

Woodland 0 0 0 0 0

East Paulding 21 14 14 0 49

Scoring Summary

EP Kamani Thomas 18 yard run (Miles Hemphill kick)

EP Kyler Neal 63 yard run (Hemphill kick)

EP Kyler Neal 63 yard run (Hemphill kick)

EP Kamani Thomas 80 yard run (Hemphill kick)

EP Kamani Thomas 34 yard run (Hemphill kick)

EP Marcus Gilbert 95-yard kickoff return (Hemphill kick)

EP Mitchell Webb 76-yard pass to Aaron Black (Hemphill kick)