It was senior night at Woodlawn High on Friday, but another description could have been statistics night as the Panthers and visiting St. Michael Warriors put up some crazy numbers in a District 6-4A shootout.
The first big number was the score as Woodlawn (5-4, 3-1 district) outscored pulled away for a convincing 60-29 win after outscoring the Warriors 27-7 in the second half.
Helping that cause with big numbers of their own were running back Javin Myers with 21 carries for 200 yards and three touchdowns, wide receiver Taj Sullivan with a 56-yard touchdown run and a 15-yard TD reception from quarterback Jamari Nelson, and Darion Jackson with two touchdowns on a 55-yard reception, a 9-yard run, and 123 total yards.
“We’re playing really well right now,” Woodlawn coach Daniel Luquet said, “and I think it starts with our focus on the practice field. We’ve got a really good coaching staff, and they’re getting the kids prepared, especially on the offensive side.
“And our quarterback Jamari (Nelson) is doing exactly what we ask him to. It all starts with him, because he touches the ball on every play. He’s playing far better than we ever expected. He brings playmaking ability to the quarterback position.”
The other quarterback on the field, St. Michael’s Treylan Sibley, had a banner night of his own. Sibley threw for 412 yards and ran for all three of the Warriors’ touchdowns. Donald Johnson was their top receiver with eight catches for 148 yards and Clarence McGarner caught three passes good for 110 yards.
Unfortunately for the Warriors, they negated their big passing night by turning the ball over five times on four fumbles and an interception. Three of the turnovers led directly to Woodlawn touchdowns on short drives.
“Good job by Woodlawn,” St. Michael coach Paul Varnado said. “We put the ball on the ground, and they took advantage of every opportunity. As a result we were chasing points all night. Once you start doing that, it changes your mentality about how you go about doing things.”
Two of the turnovers came on the Warriors’ first two possessions of the second half on an interception and a fumble.
“After that, we were kind of in desperation mode,” Varnado said, “trying to get those points back.”
The two teams combined for more than 600 yards in offense in the first half alone as Woodlawn took a 33-22 lead. Eight straight drives ended in touchdowns, a streak that was not ended until St. Michael quarterback Treylan Sibley was sacked by Troy Domino on the last play of the first half to end a promising drive.
“Troy is one of our better pass rushers,” Luquet said, “especially coming from the back side. I thought we were sleepwalking a little in the first half, but we didn’t do anything different in the second half. We just started tackling better.”
Woodlawn’s reserves had one more successful drive at the end of the game which quarterback Devin Whiting finished with a 34-yard touchdown pass to Jacob Bryant.
Woodlawn’s outstanding place-kicker, Hassan Chabayta, was 6-for-7 on PATs and barely missed a 27-yard field goal attempt in his final regular season home game.