The White House Blue Devils upset the Montgomery Central Indians, who came into the game in first place in Region 5-4A, 27-17 on Senior Night at Dewey Whitson Field on Friday.
“We were playing for our seniors,” White House coach Ryan Hamilton said. “They came out and executed today.”
The two teams slugged it out on a rainy night with both sticking to the run game. Montgomery Central attempted only one pass in the game. White House attempted three.
“It was a back-and-forth game on a messy night,” Montgomery Central coach Jeff Tomlinson said.
Montgomery Central took a 10-0 lead on a 24-yard field goal by Michael Lobdell and a 1-yard touchdown run by Noah Aldrich that capped off an eight-play, 57-yard drive.
White House answered with an 11-play, 71-yard drive that sophomore running back Ranen Blackburn finished with an 8-yard touchdown run, his first of three on the night.
The Blue Devils opened the second half by taking their first lead of the game on an 18-yard run by Blackburn. White House led 13-10 after missing the extra point.
Montgomery Central answered with another long drive when Lakendriez Sanders scored from five yards out.
The Blue Devils grabbed the lead back with a 6-yard scoring pass from Blackburn to Logan Neufeld. The extra point by Bryson Harper put White House ahead 20-17.
“We weren’t stopping them, they weren’t stopping us,” Tomlinson said. “It was who was going to make a mistake first. And we made a mistake first.”
The mistake was a fumbled snap that was recovered by White House’s Colby Taylor at the Montgomery Central 28-yard line.
White House converted the turnover into a touchdown by Blackburn on a 7-yard run to give the Blue Devils a 27-17 lead.
Montgomery Central’s last chance ended on a fourth-and-two from the White House 16-yard line, when Sanders was stopped for no gain.
White House held on to the ball for the final 2:22 to seal the victory, which improved the Blue Devils’ record to 4-5 and 1-4 in Region 5-4A.
Both teams pounded the ball, with Sanders carrying the heaviest load for the Indians. He rushed for 218 yards on 37 carries.
“We’re only going to go as he goes,” Tomlinson said. “He runs hard every week.”
Tomlinson also praised the work of his offensive line.
“Every week our offensive line comes out and plays well,” he said. “They’re a cohesive unit up front.”
Montgomery Central fell to 7-2 (3-2 in Region 5-4A) with the loss. They will finish the regular season by hosting White House-Heritage next Friday.
“If we win next week, we’ll still be second in the region,” Tomlinson said. “We’ve got plenty of goals in front of us.”
Creek Wood and Springfield will face off next week with first place in the region on the line. Montgomery Central has beaten both teams, so the Indians would own the tiebreaker for second place if they can get past White House-Heritage. If the Indians lose, their season will be over.
The Blue Devils will try to stay out of the cellar in the region standings and finish with a .500 record in Hamilton’s first season if they can win at Greenbrier (2-7, 1-4) next week.
“We’ve got to prepare mentally (for Greenbrier),” said Blackburn, who led the White House offense with 155 yards rushing and three touchdowns on 25 carries.“We can’t make mistakes.”