May times in football, patience will win you the game, no matter how good or bad the teams play on the field. While the outcome of this game was never really in question after Westwood scored early in the first quarter, the score does not reflect the tenacity of this Chandler team as it fought to the end.
The first half exposed a leaky Chandler defense. While not allowing many big plays, Chandler allowed Westwood to march down the field on almost every possession. The only area Westwood looks to need improvement is on special teams. Missed field goals and sub-par punts kept Chandler in the game more than the score showed. But Westwood's defense was up to the challenge, shutting down the running game and keeping Chandler QB Kyle Hess scrambling all night long. Hess seems to have a decent passing arm, but the pressure brought by Westwood's stalwart D-line kept him from completing the majority of his pass attempts.
Half time: Chandler 0, Westwood 13
The second half showed that the multi-talented efforts of Warrior Brice Wilkins. Whether passing 16 of 19 for 333 yards and4 TDs or running, Wilkins shredded the Chandler defense from the first snap of the third quarter. Even with some sacks from Chandler's Tony Pawlak and Sean Humphreys, Wilkins kept the drives alive, along with RB Jay Leal and Keigan Thompson.
Chandler's offense was handled soundly by a strong Westwood defense. Chandler's special teams also put their defense into tough situations, even giving up a safety when the long snap went through Darren Sweely's legs and out of the end zone. The resulting kick was flubbed, giving Westwood great field position.
Game: Chandler 0, Westwood 43
Bottom Line: Westwood stands to be a contender for a state title, just needed to work on their kicking game. QB Brice Wilkins can be a star recruit if he continues to perform. Chandler has some positives, which can be developed during the season. If the line can give QB Kyle Hess time to read defenses and get the ball out, and the receivers learn to catch under pressure, Chandler will be able to put up some numbers, even against defenses like Westwood.
Game Ball: Brice Wilkins, we all know his ability to run, but if continues passing like this many of the state's defensive coordinators may get little or no sleep.