Stratford defense dominates

Stratford used a stifling defense to shut out West Ashley, 21-0, Friday night and remain unbeaten.

The Knights (9-0, 3-0 in Region 7-AAAA) held the Wildcats (5-4, 0-2) to 125 yards of total offense at Wildcat Stadium.

“This was the best defense we have seen all year,” said West Ashley coach Bobby Marion.

Stratford’s defense put the first points on the scoreboard on a blocked punt. B.J. Wright recovered the ball in the end zone to put the Knights up 7-0 only 1:39 into the game. It was the fourth time a Wildcat punt had been blocked this season.

“It may not look like it, but we have been working really hard on our special teams,” said Marion.

The turning point in the game for West Ashley came midway through the second quarter. Facing a third-and-three at the Stratford 12, Wildcat quarterback Pedro Manigault fumbled and the Knights’ Van Harvey recovered to squelch West Ashley’s best threat of the night.

“That was a huge turnover,” said Marion.

The Knights’ second scoring drive came in the third quarter and was set up by senior Michael Simmons’ interception of a Manigault pass at the West Ashley 32.

Six plays later, Stratford quarterback Jacob Park hit Tyree Scroggins on a 2-yard scoring toss to make it 14-0. Park had a subpar night, hitting only 9 of 23 passes for 129 yards. He was continuously harassed by the West Ashley defensive line.

“We were able to pretty much shut down one of the best quarterbacks in the state,” said Marion. The Knights finished the night with only 236 total yards.

Senior running back Jordan Johnson finished the scoring midway through the fourth quarter on a 52-yard scamper around right end. Johnson finished with 107 yards on 11 carries.

For the Wildcats, Manigault completed 5 of 17 passes for 57 yards. Marion pointed out that Manigault’s night was not as bad as the stats would indicate.

Stratford 7 0 7 7–21

West Ashley 0 0 0 0–0

S – B.J. Wright recovered blocked punt in end zone (Tyler Tekac kick)

S – Jacob Park 2 pass to Tyree Scroggins (Tekac kick)

S – Jordan Johnson 52 run (Tekac kick)