The West Ashley Wildcats have seen too many first-half leads disappear in the second half of games, and they were determined not to let it happen Friday night.
With a balanced offensive attack and an opportunistic defense that added a pair of touchdowns, West Ashley routed visiting Conway, 49-14, at Wildcat Stadium.
West Ashley (5-3, 0-1 in Region 7-AAAA) scored first on an end-around pass with when Anthony Vincelli connected with wideout Logan Cooke on a 42-yard touchdown play. Tailback Marquize Jenkins added a 2-yard TD run and quarterback Pedro Manigault scored on a 6-yard run to give the Wildcats a 21-0 halftime lead.
The Wildcats made sure there would be no second-half collapse by adding three touchdowns in the third quarter, including a 60-yard interception return by Tyreek Campbell.
Anthony Dobbins ended the scoring for West Ashley with a 53-yard interception return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.
The Wildcats outgained Conway (1-6, 0-1 in Region 6-AAAA) by 308 yards to 66 on the ground. “After (Wando’s) Kenny Waring ran over us last week, we challenged the guys to be more physical,” said Wildcat coach Bobby Marion. “Also getting (linebacker) Bobby Ruff back in the lineup (concussion) helped tremendously on the corners.”
Leading West Ashley on offense was Cameron Byas with 99 yards rushing, followed by Jenkins with 86 and Manigault with 81. Manigault also completed 7 of 10 passes for 110 yards.
Conway’s two scores came on quarterback Ethan Smith’s 14-yard pass to Bryan Edwards and tailback Jeffrey Sherman’s 14-yard run.
Conway 0 7 0 7—14
West Ashley 14 7 21 7—49
WA — Logan Cooke 42 pass from Anthony Vincelli (Caroline Cashion kick)
WA — Marquize Jenkins 2 run (Cashion kick)
C — Bryan Edwards 14 pass from Ethan Smith (Jonathan Nichols kick)
WA — Pedro Manigault 6 run (Cashion kick)
WA — Tyreek Campbell 60 interception return (Cashion kick)
WA — Jenkins 2 run (Cashion kick)
WA — Manigault 11 run (Cashion kick)
C — Jeffrey Sherman 14 run (Nichols kick)
WA — Anthony Dobbins 53 interception return (Cashion kick)