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Knights, ‘Jackets clash again

WILLIAMSTOWN — Two teams going in opposite directions battle at 7 p.m. Friday, as Williamstown (4-1) welcomes Tyler Consolidated (2-4). What makes this game so contentious even with the Knights losing their last three and the Yellowjackets being winners of two in a row? Tyler is willing to throw everything it’s got to pull an upset. Per head coach Ryan Walton, his team is ready for the challenge ahead.

“When you play Williamstown, it seems like they’re always on a hot streak, year in and year out,” Walton said of the No. 7 Yellowjackets. “They’re a pretty good team. They’re well-coached with a new coach in there (Chris Beck), and nothing seems to have dropped off. We’re going to show up to Williamstown with a game plan, ready to play.”

Walton went on to say his offense is an “offense by committee” since five different players (Case Landis, David Throckmorton, Trenton Huffman, Ty Walton and Sean Winfrey) have all been called on to carry the ball. That is done to try and help remedy the loss of a big name like Mark Rucker, who graduated last year.

“We’ve got some young guys in there, and they’re getting valuable experience,” Walton said. “Hopefully, we’ll be able to put it all together this week and have a nice game.”

On the flip side, Williamstown rode its defense to a 15-12 triumph on the road against Summers County. Coach Beck saw his team grind out the win, but he wants more consistency as the weeks continue to pass. Late in the season is the ideal time for everything to gel, and Beck says late-season stability is the key for WHS’s continued success.

“I think we’re getting better every week and progressing, but we’ve still got ways to go. A win is a win,” he said of the victory over Summers County. “Beating two quality opponents (Summers and St. Marys the week prior) definitely gives us confidence, and I think this team still hasn’t hit their ceiling yet. I know it was a great confidence booster to beat Summers County, even though we didn’t play our best game.

“They’re excited to keep progressing to see how high we can go. I think we’re going to get their best shot. We’re not going to see the Tyler team from the last couple weeks.”

In last week’s win, the ‘Jackets had their usual suspects come out to help lead the team. Leewood Molessa made his mark on both lines, as linebacker Brady Ankrom also worked alongside Molessa on the o-line to free up running room. That sprung Trevor Oates loose in the game, as the converted running back continues to shine where he’s needed. He also blocked a late field goal to cap off the game in dramatic fashion.

“He’s been a workhorse for us. He’d probably be the fist one to tell you the offensive line took control of that game,” Beck said of Oates. “We would definitely like to be more balanced, but the strength of our team is our offensive line and those four seniors. I think Trevor is putting up good numbers. He has potential and can do better. I think he’s only played five games at tailback his whole life.”

Beck stated TCHS’s Landis and wideout Justin Bowman are going to be key matchups for his defense, as Huffman and Throckmorton should factor in, as well. The Tyler offense poses a threat since they “attack you in so many different ways and so many different formations,” according to Beck.

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