LEES CREEK — New coach, new quarterback, same result for the Waynesville High football team.
The Spartans won their fifth straight season opener against East Clinton on Friday, Aug. 27, beating the Astros, 31-16.
Junior quarterback Luke Credit — in his first varsity start — rushed for 160 yards and threw for 128 to lead the Spartans and give new coach Brandon Philpot his first varsity win.
“It was a great feeling,” Philpot said. “I was pleased with the kids’ effort. We still have a lot of things to improve on, but overall it was an exciting night for our kids and our coaching staff to get that first win under our belt.”
Waynesville’s offense sputtered in the first quarter, but a few line adjustments got things rolling and the Spartans ended the quarter on a 37-yard touchdown pass from Credit to Ryan Potter.
“They were twisting and stunting at first and mixed things up on us which confused us early,” Philpot said. “But, our offensive line adjusted, made sure that we were gap responsible, and from then on out things went pretty smooth.”
The Spartans (1-0) racked up almost 400 yards of offense, with 264 of those coming on the ground. Credit ran for two touchdowns — covering 15 and 21 yards — while Caleb Powers scored from a yard out and Caleb Keeton kicked a 41-yard field goal to account for Waynesville’s scoring.
“Luke had a pretty good night overall,” Philpot said. “We did throw two interceptions, so it wasn’t perfect, but overall we were excited with his effort, especially since it was his first game as a Spartan.”
The Waynesville defense smothered East Clinton’s ground game, holding the Astros (0-1) to 43 yards rushing on 25 attempts.
Powers led the defense with 11 total tackles, while Isaac Hammonds and Josh Powell each had nine. Ty Black had an interception while Mike Tarkany and Michael Hooser both had two tackles for a loss.
“Our defense did a good job in the first half getting a lot of three-and-outs to give our offense lots of opportunities to score,” Philpot said. “We gave up a couple of long passes, but other than that we played really well.”
Potter was the teams’ leading receiver with three catches for 61 yards.
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