STARKVILLE - The West Point Green Wave had their first taste of live football Saturday afternoon at Davis Wade Stadium, and although they came out with a 21-20 loss to long time rival Louisville in the first game of the 10-team jamboree, head coach Chris Chambless knows it was a just a measuring stick to see where they are heading into the opening week.
â€śWe didnâ€™t approach this with a game plan,â€ť he said. â€śWe approach these games as seeing the guys we want to see running certain plays. Thereâ€™s certain situations in a game where we wouldnâ€™t run those plays. We had so many plays we wanted to run and so many different looks on defense we wanted to do.â€ť
Now he says after watching film, theyâ€™ll be able to correct those mistakes.
Louisville went three and out on their opening drive and the Green Wave offense quickly went to work with senior quarterback Dequinten Spraggins orchestrating a five-play 65-yard drive that he capped off with a 40-yard touchdown run.
Louisville responded when Wyatt Roberts connected with CJ Bates for a 54-yard touchdown down the sideline to give the Wildcats a 7-6 lead after the extra point. It wouldnâ€™t bet the last time two hooked up.
Spraggins fumbled on the first play of West Pointâ€™s next possession and the Wildcats again took advantage of the young secondary when Roberts found Bates for a six-yard score.
â€śOur secondary is brand new,â€ť Chambless said of his young group. â€śWe have four new faces out there and thatâ€™s been the hardest working group this summer since the spring. They have improved. Weâ€™re going to get a lot better there.â€ť
West Point bounced back on their next possession on the shoulders, or rather fast feet of Tez Lane who broke half a dozen tackles on his way to the end zone for a 49-yard touchdown.
The Green Wave defense gave up another big play, a 75-yard Bates touchdown to put the Wildcats up 21-12. The third in the first half for the duo.
West Point again, didnâ€™t hang their heads, instead responded with several big plays themselves on their next possession including a 45-yard pass and catch from Spraggins to Lane. The drive however, ended
with a turnover.
The second half was a much different story for the Green Wave as they were able to run the ball more efficiently.
â€śWe work on running the ball year-round,â€ť Chambless said. â€śWhen we can move the chains running the football, thatâ€™s a big positive for us. I was real pleased to see that.â€ť
West Point pounded the football in every direction for a 63-yard drive capped by a five yard Mario Virges touchdown run.
Chambless said that the players remained positive after the game, knowing the jamboree was a learning experience. The real season starts next Saturday against South Panola.
â€śWe canâ€™t duck our heads and act like this is the end, because itâ€™s not,â€ť he said. â€śOur kids know that, they are very mature individuals.
They know what we have to do to finish it,â€ť
Tickets will be pre-sold Wednesday, August 17 and Thursday, August 18 from 5-7 p.m. inside the athletic office on campus.View more articles in: