Colonels top Hawks in suspended game

WINCHESTER — James Wood head football coach Todd Wilson saw his team overcome adversity all week long and they did it again on Saturday.
The Colonels came out strong after their game with Skyline was suspended on Friday night and topped the Hawks 41-13.
Wilson said the Colonels practiced indoors all week due to the weather, and battled through that adversity.
“This is a great group of kids,” Wilson said. “They love the game of football. They want to be here, and it’s fun to coach when you have a group of kids that want to be here.”
The Colonels led 14-7 on Friday night with 1:52 left in the first quarter when lightning suspended the game. It was resumed on Saturday morning at 11 a.m.
Wilson said James Wood’s Touchdown Club went out and bought eggs, bacon, sausage and pancakes for all the players for breakfast on Saturday morning.
“We brought the kids in at 8 o’clock (Saturday) morning and it was like a family picnic,” Wilson said. “We were sitting around eating breakfast together. So it was enjoyable.”
The game was filled with turnovers and penalties.
James Wood (2-1) scored on its first possession on Saturday. The Colonels went 65 yards on eight plays.
James Wood running back Elijah Richards capped the drive off with a 15-yard touchdown run for a 21-7 lead with 9:27 left in the second quarter.
The two teams combined for four turnovers on the next five possessions. The Colonels took advantage of the last one of the half.
James Wood quarterback Owen Neal connected with Justin Gwinner for a 26-yard touchdown pass with 21 seconds left in the first half and a 27-7 halftime lead.
The Hawks (0-2) scored on the opening possession of the second half. Skyline went 69 yards on five plays with Aidan Vaught scoring on a 44-yard touchdown run to cut the lead to 27-13 with 7:55 left in the third quarter.
James Wood stretched the lead to 34-13 on a 3-yard touchdown run by Hunter Rose with 20 seconds left in the third quarter. The run capped off an eight-play, 56-yard drive. All eight plays were running plays for the Colonels.
“Our guys up front, we just haven’t been executing,” Wilson said. “They know what to do. They’re big enough, they’re strong enough. We just haven’t been putting it together, and today was a much better performance in the run game.”
James Wood capped off the scoring with a 21-yard touchdown run by Kobe Mason with 2:49 left in the game.
Before the game was suspended, Skyline took a 7-0 lead with 8:21 left in the first quarter. Skyline’s Jacob Britton scored on an 8-yard run, which was set-up by a 54-yard pass from Nick Mrad to Vaught.
The Colonels tied the game with a blocked punt, which was recovered in the end zone by Casey Floyd with 5:05 left in the first quarter.
A 44-yard run by Richards set-up a 1-yard touchdown run by Rose with 1:58 left in the opening quarter and a 14-7 James Wood lead.
“Hats off to James Wood,” Skyline head football coach Heath Gilbert said. “I thought that we could compete and at times we looked like we can. There’s a lot of mistakes out there that we have to try to clean up. There was positives and negatives. It wasn’t a total wash. At times we looked like we can play some defense, other times we’re out of position and on offense it’s the same thing. We have to keep our emotions in check. It’s been tough for us. Hopefully we can learn not to throw gas on the fire when things get tough.”
Skyline turned the ball over six times on Saturday, including five interceptions. Skyline committed 12 penalties for 100 yards, while James Wood had 14 penalties for 157 yards.
In Saturday’s part of the game, Vaught had 88 yards rushing, while Zayden Burks ran for 54 yards.
Skyline plays at Millbrook on Friday. Gilbert said it’s important for his squad to stick together after a tough loss.
“Staying together is number one. We got to keep fighting,” Gilbert said. “I told them, obviously I love them. I don’t want this for them. I want us to be successful. We are trying to prepare as hard as we can. I feel like we don’t take shortcuts on that. It just didn’t work out today.”
Richards had 174 yards on 20 carries during Saturday’s portion of the game to lead James Wood.
The Colonels play at Kettle Run on Friday. Wilson said he knows Kettle Run will be a challenge.
“We know we’re going to be tested,” Wilson said. “Next week is a really tough opponent. Kettle Run is a good football program. We’re going to do our best to be prepared to give them everything we can.”

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