No. 4 – West Point vs. Saltillo

West Point senior Demontae Rush founds open space against the Saltillo Tigers on Oct. 24 at Mitch Grissom Field in Saltillo. West Point senior Kadarius Forside rounds the corner with the help of a block against the Saltillo Tigers Oct. 24 at Mitch Grissom Field in Saltillo.
By: 
WILL NATIONS
Sports Reporter

The first five games Daily Times Leader breaks down from the 2014 season is West Point High School's season. The Green Wave made its 14th consecutive playoff berth last season, finishing with a 9-5 overall record. West Point was the No. 3 seed in Region 1-5A behind No. 2 New Hope and back-to-back champions Oxford. Head Coach Chris Chambless and his team defeated Germantown High School in the opening round of the postseason before falling to Class 5-A runner-up Oxford. The Wave opens this season against Louisville High School at 7 p.m. on Aug. 28 in Louisville.

NO. 4: Wednesday's game recap highlights West Point's 49-20 conference victory over the Saltillo Tigers on Oct. 24 in Saltillo.

THE FACTS: West Point amassed 612 yards of total offense as the Green Wave washed away the six-win Saltillo Tigers 49-20 on Oct. 24 at Mitch Grissom Field. On the legs of Kadarius Forside in the Region 1-5A matchup, West Point did not trail at any point of the game, leading 35-14 at halftime. The Wave improved its record to 7-3 overall, 4-1 Region 1-5A as Saltillo went to 6-4 overall with a 2-3 mark in region play.
THE STATS: Forside was a wrecking ball out of the backfield against Saltillo, rushing for 190 yards and three touchdowns of 9, 14 and 53 yards in the first half alone. Demontae Rush added 89 yards with two second half touchdowns. Miller Keys had a 3-yard rushing touchdown. The Wave offense had 398 yards on the ground. Through the air, Dason Thomas, who had 62 yards on the ground, went 9 of 13 for 179 yards, including a 62-yard touchdown pass to senior Steffon Moore.
Facing a running back that was averaging 160 yards per game, Saltillo's Diamante Pound was maintained for 56 yards and only one touchdown by West Point. As a team, the Tigers only had 88 rushing yards. Saltillo sophomore Clayton Knight completed 10 of 20 passes for 192 yards and two touchdowns. West Point's Josh Ewing intercepted Knight in the first quarter, leading to an 81-yard touchdown drive.
WHAT THEY SAID: West Point Head Coach Chris Chambless – “We were able to knock people off the line tonight. As West Point, we love to run the football. The offensive line does a huge job with Chris Humphries, Josh Coggins, Donald Wesley, Scott Lashley, Joshua Birchfield and Devin Morton neutralizing the opposing defensive front.” “We are able to pass the ball well this season,” Chambless added. “Dason Thomas has done a great job at quarterback.”
West Point running back Kadarius Forside – “I have to get stronger with contact because I feel like I am the heart of the offense at running back. Making the transition from all those position, now that I am at running back I am able to run the ball for points. I do whatever it is to help my team win and work towards a state championship.”
WHY THIS GAME: Vying for strong positioning in the playoffs and possible homefield advantage, West Point made a strong step toward achieving both goals. Against Saltillo, which held a strong record, the Wave looked to put any doubts to rest about the passion this team had. This game was arguably the most complete game as West Point successfully executed an onside kick to start the game, held the Tigers to 88 yards on the ground and demoralized the Tiger defense with 612 yards of total offense.
For me, West Point's 49-20 win was entertaining from start to finish. Nothing beats a offensive unit absolutely pressing the issue on the ground. Watching a team tally 398 rushing yards was impressive, especially on the high school level. Rushing is a team effort because a running attack is more than one person's responsibility. West Point's offensive line plugged its best performance of the season that night and returns two from that starting lineup.
THE NEXT MEETING: West Point and Saltillo share the same region this season and are set to square off at McCallister Field in West Point on Friday, Oct. 23.

Follow Will Nations on Twitter @NationsSports. In case you missed No. 5 follow this line ---> http://dailytimesleader.com/content/no-5-%E2%80%93-west-point-vs-lewisburg

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