Weaver’s big day powers Polk Middle to win in season opener

Published 8:00 am Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Polk County Middle head football coach Ethan Edwards liked the offensive focus he saw Thursday from his Wolverines.

He seemed pretty pleased with his backfield, as well.

Eighth-grader Angus Weaver rushed for 245 yards and three touchdowns on 14 carries to lead the Wolverines to a 30-22 victory over Madison Middle in a Blue Ridge Conference clash at Utz Field.

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Weaver’s big day helped make a winner of Polk Middle in its season opener. The Wolverines’ offensive line routinely opened holes for Weaver, who routinely made the most of them, often breaking tackles to extend plays.

The effort gave Polk County a 30-8 lead by halftime. Edwards opted to give his reserves playing time in the second half; Madison did not and scored twice in the final three minutes, the second score cutting Polk’s lead to eight with 46 seconds left.

But Weaver recovered the ensuing onside kick attempt, and Polk Middle ran out the clock.

“Our offensive intensity was much better than in our scrimmage,” Edwards said. “We blocked downfield, we hurried up to get to the line and get set.

“Defensively, we were pretty solid. We could have wrapped up a little better and tackled a little better. Those are some things we need to work on.”

Weaver put Polk ahead just more than a minute into the game, powering up the middle, cutting to his right and outracing Madison’s secondary for an 86-yard touchdown run, the 2-point conversion by Marcus Simpson giving Polk an 8-0 lead.

Forcing a Madison punt on its first possession, Polk County then fashioned a more standard scoring drive, marching 76 yards in 10 plays. Weaver scored from 25 yards out to cap the drive, with Casey Beiler adding the 2-point conversion for a 16-0 lead with 6:29 left in the second period.

Madison operated out of a single-back spread formation the entire game, looking to play at a quick pace. The strategy worked on the Patriots’ second drive as Madison covered 52 yards in four plays, all passes, in 59 seconds to cut Polk’s lead to 16-8.

Weaver answered with a 45-yard touchdown run, then had a sack to stop Madison’s next drive, giving Polk possession at the Madison 47 with 57 seconds left in the half. The Wolverines drove to the Madison 14 before calling timeout in the final seconds, then had Beiler hit Ethan Jackson on a seam route as time ran out for another score.

Weaver added the 2-point conversion to make it 30-8 at the half.

“I thought the guys fought really hard,” Edwards said. “We executed what we had planned on offense and our guys didn’t seem to get shook the entire game on defense.”

Polk Middle will travel Thursday to Canton Middle for another Blue Ridge Conference matchup.

– Submitted by PolkSports.com