Seeking their second win of the season themselves, the Wildcats mounted a second-half comeback only to see it fall short, losing to the Bruins, 28-18.
"Northwest is one of the best 2-5 teams you will ever see," Wildcats coach Steve Hamilton said. "They are big and physical."
Northwest Whitfield's Nathan Sistrunk pushed the ball to Woodland's 5-yard line on the opening series and then punched it in himself for the night's first score.
After the successful extra point, the Bruins were up 7-0 with 6:34 left in the first quarter.
On the ensuing series, the Wildcats picked up a yard to their own 30 before Cambrell Turner blasted through the middle of the line and raced the defenders to the goal line for a Woodland touchdown.
The extra point failed, leaving Northwest Whitfield with a 7-6 lead with 4:53 left in the first.
Operating from the Woodland 15 well into their next drive, the Bruins' Sistrunk was dropped for a 5-yard loss by Clint Lemon, who broke through the line, to end the first quarter.
Facing second-and-15 to start the second quarter, Northwest Whitfield attempted a screen play only to be stopped for a loss by the Wildcats' Steven Waits who, along with Lemon, seemed to be all over the field all night.
"I am proud of Clint's effort on the field these last couple of weeks, and Steven is one of our leaders. He is a smart kid and gives you great effort every play," Hamilton said.
After a short gain on third down, the Bruins decided to go for it on fourth down, but were denied by a Woodland defense that showed much pride in refusing to give in.
Unfortunately, the Wildcats had to give the ball back to Northwest Whitfield, and Garrett Livingood's ensuing punt was partially blocked, setting up the Bruins with good field position at the Woodland 29-yard line.
Four plays later, Northwest Whitfield scored on a Luke Woodason run and after the extra point, the Bruins led 14-6 with 7:14 left in the half.
Following a 40-plus-yard run by Wildcat quarterback Ashton Shelton to the Northwest Whitfield 14, Woodland was primed to respond before back-to-back plays left it facing third down.
A busted play resulted a net loss of 6 yards, and the Wildcats had to settle for a 37-yard field goal attempt, which missed to send the ball back to the Bruins.
Woodland's defense again held its ground and returned the ball to its offense, which watched its drive end after a keeper around the left side was fumbled.
Northwest Whitfield's Zach Sloan picked up the loose ball and returned it to the Wildcat 37.
Matt Allen found Clifford Phillips in the back of the end zone to extend the Bruins' lead to 21-6 after the extra point to end the first half.
Woodland drove the ball inside the red zone on its opening drive of the second half -- which included a 42-yard run by Turner -- but the Wildcats came away empty.
Facing fourth-and-three, Woodland attempted a pass play that fell short for an incomplete pass, giving the Bruins the ball back at the 8-yard line.
Northwest Whitfield got the ball down to the Wildcats' 11 when Justin Andrews took a pitch outside to the Woodland 1-yard line.
On the next play, Andrews' number was called again as he scored from short distance.
The Bruins led 28-6 with 3:58 left in the third quarter.
The Wildcats were aided by a personal foul penalty -- much like Northwest Whitfield on its previous drive -- as Shelton's pass to Josh Young fell incomplete, but a head-to-head extended the drive and moved the ball to the Bruins' 45.
Turner grinded out 7 tough yards, and Shelton danced up the middle to the Northwest Whitfield 10 as time expired in the third quarter.
A 4-yard gain began the fourth quarter, and Shelton then bootlegged to freeze the defense and score for Woodland.
A two-point conversion try by the Wildcats was stopped short of the goal line to make the score 28-12 with 11:53 left in the game.
After gaining eight yards on the first two plays of its ensuing drive, Northwest Whitfield attempted to seal the game with a pass, but Trey Thompson intercepted it and sprinted 45 yards for a TD to put Woodland within striking distance.
The two-point conversion again failed, as the Wildcats trailed 28-18 with 10:25 left.
The two teams traded possessions, and Woodland was not able to carry that momentum for another score as time expired on the clock to end the game.
"Good things are coming to these young men. A couple of plays that get made, games like this one (go) the other way," Hamilton said.
The Wildcats rushed 26 times for 235 yards and went 2-of-7 passing for 12 yards.
Turner led Woodland with 126 yards and a TD on eight carries, Shelton ran 10 times for 85 yards and a score and Austin Chadwick had 21 yards on four carries.
Woodland (1-7, 1-7 Region 7-AAAA) travels to Canton Friday to face Creekview (3-6, 3-6).
SCORING BY QUARTERS
1 2 3 4 F
NOR 7 14 7 28
WOO 6 0 0 12 18
NOR -- Nathan Sistrunk 5-yd run (kick good), 6:34
WOO -- Cambrell Turner 70-yd run (kick failed), 4:53
NOR -- Luke Woodason 22-yd run (kick good), 7:14
NOR -- Clifford Phillips 26-yd pass from Matt Allen (kick good), 0:00
NOR -- Justin Andrews 1-yd run (kick good), 3:58
WOO -- Ashton Shelton 6-yd run (conversion failed), 11:53
WOO -- Trey Thompson 45-yd interception return (conversion failed), 10:25