September 23, 2022 By Vaseline

West Plains wins second straight win with Estacado takedown

West Plain's Jordi Hernandez (2) runs with the ball against Estacado on Thursday, September 22, 2022 at Happy State Bank Stadium in Canyon.  West Plains won, 35-14.

CANYON — The West Plains Wolves are out to prove the doubters wrong.

After a winless first three weeks of their inaugural season, the Wolf Pack are now back-to-back game winners after a 35-14 drubbing against Lubbock Estacado Thursday night at Happy State Bank Stadium. It was the first home win in school history and the second in a row for a burgeoning side that ignored the outside noise and kept their nose to the grindstone in the first half of the regular season.

“It finally feels like we’re starting to figure it out and be the team that we can be,” said West Plains coach Adam Cummings.

Wolves’ second standout performance in a row began with the game of freshman quarterback Reid Macon. The young gunslinger lengthened his plays with his impressive footwork in the pocket and was able to work through his reads to find the open man consistently. Macon finished the game with 18 of 28 passes for 211 yards and four touchdowns with one interception.

Macon was able to propel his team onto the field all night with the help of a strong offensive line and an abundance of playmakers that made life difficult for the Matador defense.

“He keeps growing,” Cummings said. “We will continue to see that because of his work ethic. From a leadership perspective, but from an X’s and O’s and mechanical perspective, he puts time and effort into improving his craft every week. He’s never satisfied and we love that about him.”

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West Plains junior running back Jordi Hernandez carried the ball 36 times for 160 yards and scored one goal. The junior had over 100 yards at halftime and the balanced offensive game plan kept the Estacado defense busy.

Also on the offensive, the young Matador team found it difficult to constantly come down. Estacado coach William Blaylock relied on a big dose from his second running back Bobby Ross (83 yards on 21 attempts) when the passing game didn’t work but the Wolves’ defense flew to the ball in all four quarters. There was also a large crowd during Thursday night’s West Plains homecoming celebrations, giving Estacado opponents a hard time.

“We thought about it beforehand,” Blaylock said. “Part of that might have been the atmosphere. We talked about that at halftime and you’re going to see that if we want to be in the playoffs and play great football. We gotta go out there and man get up and play. I thought Bobby was running hard, it just wasn’t his night tonight. We have a few things to tweak ahead of time, and the good news is that it wasn’t a district ball game. I never doubted my team’s struggle but we have to learn to play all four quarters together.”

The West Plains defense forced a crucial turnover with a stripe sack by junior defenseman Dawson Hall late in the second quarter, which was recovered by junior Jarrett Diggs, who set up the Wolves’ third touchdown of the night. Diggs wreaked havoc all night in the Estacado backfield alongside outside linebacker Quentin Elam. The junior two-way linesman also came up with a sack for a big second-half loss and was pleased with the team performance of his defense on Thursday night.

“We were really aggressive,” Diggs said. “Our coach told us at half-time not to take our foot off their necks and I did. I didn’t take my foot off the pedal and played both ways, you’ll get tired. I just had to be mentally strong The last two weeks have been really great. We worked our ass off for that, so coming out with a win feels great. We deserve this.

West Plains is now just one game below .500, proving themselves against their District 2-4A Div. II competition that there will be no easy “W” in the record column. Cummings and his dedicated coaching staff keep this team playing with confidence through all three phases of the game, and that belief in themselves only grows every time.

The wolves may hear the sounds outside, but everyone knows that a wolf never cares about the opinion of sheep.

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“The reality is that it was never in our cards to be a freshman 0-10 team,” Cummings said. “It was never our plan. Our plan was to be successful straight away. There are a lot of people who might have doubted that, but we as coaches don’t, we certainly don’t as players and we certainly don’t as a community. We expect that to happen first year is going to be good and I think our kids are really starting to embrace it and believe in it.

Next: West Plains (2-3) will take on the Hereford Whitefaces next Friday night while the Matadors (2-3) host Sweetwater.

WESTPLAINS 35, LUBBOCK ESTACADO 14

Lubbock Estacado 0 0 7 7 — 14

West Plains 7 14 0 14 — 35

Review Summary

first quarter

WP – Reid Macon 7 pass to Crockett Henry (Joseph Estrada kick); 8:57

second quarter

WP – Jordi Hernandez 6 Rush (Estrada Kick); 7:49

WP – Reid Macon 9 pass to Trae Ferril (Estrada kick); 0:18

Third quarter

EST – Cedric Ross 22 Rush (Joseph Mata Kick); 9:48

fourth quarter

WP – Reid Macon 46 pass to King Tallant (Estrada kick); 11:39

WP – Reid Macon 12 pass to Trae Ferril (Estrada kick); 2:56

EST – DJ Johnson 10 pass to Devoryea Boyd (Mata Kick); 0:21

Individual statistics

Rush – West Plains: Jordi Hernandez 36-160, Gabriel Alvarado 3-12, Reid Macon 4-9, Breland Franklin 1-(-11). Lubbock Estacado: Bobby Ross 21-83, Cedric Ross 2-23, Donivan Torrez 1-0, DJ Johnson 8-(-47).

Pass – West Plains: Reid Macon 18-28-1-211. Lubbock Estacado: DJ Johnson 12-28-0-198.

Receive – West Plains: Trae Ferril 7-87, King Tallant 4-78, Crockett Henry 3-18, Jensen Phillips 2-13, Jordi Hernandez 1-8, Jedd Phillips 1-7. Lubbock Estacado: Devoryea Boyd 6-115, Cedric Ross 3-70, Joshua Cubit 2-1, Dee’Ondric Green 1-12.