Oakman onslaught

Wildcats rout Daleville, head to 2nd round

By W. BRIAN HALE, Eagle Sports Writer
Posted 11/9/17

DALEVILLE — The Oakman Wildcats broke open a scoreless halftime contest against the Daleville Warhawks with an offensive onslaught that led to a 31-12 victory and a second-round berth in the Class 3A playoffs on Thursday night at Daleville.

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Oakman onslaught

Wildcats rout Daleville, head to 2nd round

Posted

DALEVILLE — The Oakman Wildcats broke open a scoreless halftime contest against the Daleville Warhawks with an offensive onslaught that led to a 31-12 victory and a second-round berth in the Class 3A playoffs on Thursday night at Daleville.

The Wildcats, which had produced 45 total yards in the first half, held a 333-322 edge over the Warhawks for the game.

Senior quarterback Jon Avery led Oakman. He completed 9 of 13 passes for 218 yards and three touchdowns. His top target, Nick Moody, caught four passes for 134 yards with two touchdowns. Malcom Hogue led the team in rushing with 51 yards on eight carries with a touchdown.

Defensively, Oakman proved toughest in the red zone, turning away three Daleville scoring opportunities on critical drives. Nathan Wright and Logan Martin each recorded seven tackles to lead the defense.

“I can’t say enough about how our defense played — they were great throughout the game. Outside of a long run Daleville had for a score, they were solid,” Oakman head coach Mark Hastings said. “In the second half, we just started to open things up offensively with some good passes. Nick Moody made some great plays breaking loose and we just got good momentum going. Every defensive stop kept that momentum going, so we had a good overall team effort.”

The first half was marked with trips to the red zone for Daleville, only to be turned away by Oakman’s defense — as the teams entered halftime with a scoreless tie.

The Wildcats scored the first touchdown of the game on their second series of the third quarter. Avery connected with Fernando Hernandez on a 30-yard touchdown strike and followed with a pass to Nathan Gilbreath on the two-point conversion to put Oakman ahead 8-0.

The Warhawks wasted little time in responding, scoring on the first play on the ensuing drive with a 58-yard run. The two-point conversion was not successful, leaving the Wildcats on top, 8-6.

Oakman (8-3) answered with a score on the next series with a four-play, 31-yard drive. Avery found Moody on a 25-yard touchdown pass, then connected with Moody again for the two-point conversion for the 16-6 advantage.

Daleville (6-5) put together a sustained drive of 13 plays, 54 yards on the following possession, scoring on a six-yard run. The two-point conversion was once again stopped by the Oakman defense, leaving the Wildcats in control, 16-12.

The Wildcats opened the fourth quarter with a six-play, 58-yard drive, ending with a three-yard run from Hogue. Avery found Gilbreath again on the two-point conversion, pushing Oakman further ahead, 24-12.

Midway through the fourth quarter, Avery and Moody connected again on a 47-yard strike for the touchdown. JonDawson Tittle kick the extra point for the 31-12 final.

The loss snapped Daleville’s four-game winning streak.

With the win, Oakman advanced to the second round of the playoffs for the seventh straight season under Hastings.

Moody, who needed one yard to reach 1,000 receiving yards this season, now has 1,133 yards heading into the second round of the playoffs.

Next up for Oakman is a game against the winner of the Prattville Christian vs. Hillcrest-Evergreen contest that will be played tonight.

If Hillcrest wins, the Wildcats will host a second-round game next week. If Prattville Christian wins, Oakman travels.