WJ Football: A season in retrospect

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Photo Courtesy of Lifetouch

Junior Lucas Boiteux catches 67 yard touchdown throw from fellow junior Will Gardner against BCC. This was one of the game-changing plays that helped lead WJ to their 26-6 victory over their rival.

The sound of cowbells buzzed through the air once again as the WJ home crowd gathered to cheer on the football team on their senior night against rival BCC. Despite the heavy restriction on the number of fans, the crowd was humming with energy from the first time the team took the field.

It was this energy the team took with them as they completed a 26-6 routing of their rival, highlighted by an impressive balanced attack from the offense. The matchup featured junior quarterback Will Gardner throwing for 254 yards and 3 TD’s with no interceptions, connecting with fellow junior Lucas Boiteux 6 times for 159 yards and a TD. In the rushing game, Aaron Jones racked up 136 yards of his own with a TD, highlighted by an 80-yard run during which he bounced off of multiple tacklers before breaking into the secondary.

The story of the game was the 3rd and 4th downs of both teams, WJ continuously staunching BCC’s offensive efforts on one side of the ball while scoring 3 of their 4 own touchdowns on 3rd and long situations.

“It felt great to get back on the field and get a win against our rival after over a year without football,” Boiteux said. “I’m grateful we got the chance to play despite COVID.”

A week later the team traveled over to Churchill to face their first and only road test of the season. Churchill was coming off a dominant 44-7 win over Whitman entering this game.

The Wildcats struggled early despite heading into halftime with a 10-3 lead. Each team’s defense took control in the first half, with a combined 3 interceptions and 2 fumbles making for a sloppy start to the contest for both offenses.

The Wildcats were able to turn it all around in the second half however, coming out looking rejuvenated as the run game and continued great defensive performance helped aid them in taking a commanding lead.

WJ went on to win 34-10, finishing the shortened season 2-0.

In the end, the team was able to properly send off seniors with two blowout wins despite the improbability that surrounded the season.

“It was nice to give some guys closure and others an opportunity to get on the field those last two games,” senior Arun Sen said.

Players returning for next season are already looking ahead to next fall, encouraged by the rising talent showcased during the two games.

“I look forward to having a full season next fall where the stakes are higher and we can play a wide variety of competition,” Gardner said. “The goal is to continue building on what we did in the last couple years and I hope to lead the team to that goal.”

Montgomery County hopes to be able to lead a semi-normal school year next fall, leaving returning students and coaches to hope sports seasons will be on time and at their full length in the future.

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