Sunday, September 14, 2014

Wash High has work to do after win over Waynesburg

Wash High and Waynesburg ended in a thrilling 28-20 victory for the Prexies Friday night. The game lived up to the hype and a few things can be taken from the Interstate Conference match up.

The Raiders (2-1, 2-1) did exactly what they needed to do. Head coach Russ Moore schemed to stop Wash High’s running game and it worked. Senior Malik Wells finished with 44 yards on nine carries, Junior Kurt Atkins had 21 yards on eight carries and senior quarterback Jonathan Spina’s 36 yards on four carries led to two touchdowns and a pivotal 28-yard game on the game-winning drive.

Moore accounted for Wash High’s running backs, but it was the Prexies’ dual-threat quarterback who hurt them the most. Spina rushed for two touchdowns and threw a 55-yard touchdown strike to senior wide receiver DeQuay Isbell in the first quarter.

What does that say? Well, Spina can help Wash High win football games when its defense plays poorly and the running game is stagnant. He made two great throws on two-point conversions and managed the offense well.

It also says that Waynesburg has to adjust its game plan moving forward. John-Glen Davis and Hunter Cenname are great talents. Those two running backs are going to win Waynesburg games, but the Raiders’ secondary has to improve.

I see them having problems with McGuffey, which also has a quarterback that can hurt teams with his arm and his feet – Nathan Whipkey. Waynesburg allowed Spina to pick up yards when the running backs had no room to run. The Raiders should not be surprised that happened.

Spina is very athletic and can hurt you with his weapons on the outside. Wash High’s offensive line also lived up to the hype. Despite Waynesburg rushing six or seven guys almost every down, the Prexies’ front-five held on and gave Spina time to work.

Also, their defensive line is very impressive. The group created a push consistently, but Wash High’s weakness is at linebacker. Head coach Mike Bosnic might be forced to move some guys around to find a good mixture at the position.

Missed tackles were the story of the night and almost cost the Prexies (3-0, 3-0) the game. It was also concerning to see them allow Waynesburg quarterback Colby Collins complete two desperation throws on fourth down – one of which tied the game with  9:39 remaining in the fourth quarter.

Those are mistakes that can be cleaned up, but no one should be surprised this was a close game. Bosnic described the Raiders as “scrappy” and they were just that. Cenname and Davis picked up chunks of yards on the ground, while the defensive front played a great game.

The Prexies play Brownsville in Week 4, which is a great opportunity to make adjustments and prep for a Week 5 game against Mount Pleasant. The Vikings will use an almost identical game plan as Waynesburg. The Raiders and MP actually face eachother this week, which will be a tough one to pick. I don't think the Vikings have what it takes to stop Cenname and Davis.

Wash High has to be ready to improve. Knowing the talent on that team with its coaching staff, they will.

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