The Marion County Warriors advanced to the second round of the TSSAA playoffs Friday with a 28-7 win over Westmoreland.
Marion County head coach Joey Mathis said his defense played well all night.
“The defense played lights out the entire night and really set us up with some good field position and some much-needed turnovers. We ended with four takeaways,” he said.
Mathis said his offense “played well at times” and he will look to make improvements during the week.
“Offensively we just have to be more consistent and continue to improve,” he said. “We have to clean up some assignments and untimely penalties, but in the playoffs, it’s survive and advance so we’re happy to be one of the 16 teams left playing. The kids’ effort all week and tonight was great. I am happy to get to practice again with this team.”
Jacob Saylors put the first points on the board for Marion County (6-5). He cruised into the end zone from 21 yards out for the score. James Hudson tacked on the extra point to make the score 7-0.
The next score came in the second quarter.
Quarterback Isaiah Sampson connected with Kane Hale for an 81-yard pitch and catch for the score. Hudson’s extra point was good and the Warriors went into the half up 14-0.
Saylors added another rushing score in the third quarter, this time from 27 yards out. Hudson booted the extra point to make the score 21-0 with 8:33 to go in the third.
Westmoreland (5-6) finally got on the board with 1:38 to go in the third. Tate Sloan scored from 35 yards out. The extra point made the score 21-7.
The Warriors secured the win in the fourth quarter. Brett Nelson scored on a 26-yard run with 4:25 to go in the game. Hudson tacked on the extra point to make the score 28-7.
The Warriors had 253 yards rushing and 89 yards passing. Westmoreland had 127 yards on the ground and 103 through the air.
Saylors had 112 yards rushing on 13 carries.
Seth McClain had 105 yards on 16 carries. Nelson had 55 yards on six carries.
Sampson had three completed passes for 89 yards.
The Warriors will travel to Trousdale County this Friday to take on the Yellow Jackets.