Weekly Feature



2014-10-29 / Sports

Blue Devils advance past Lancaster in playoffs

Football
BRANDON KILIJANSKI
Sports Reporter


Kenmore West junior quarterback Deangelo Walker-Johnson powers his way for a 4-yard touchdown run in the second quarter against Lancaster in the Class AA quarterfinals on Saturday. The score put the Blue Devils up 12-0 and they went on to win 41-21. Kenmore West will host Orchard Park in the semifinals. 
Photo by Patrick McPartlandPurchase color photos at www.BeeNews.com Kenmore West junior quarterback Deangelo Walker-Johnson powers his way for a 4-yard touchdown run in the second quarter against Lancaster in the Class AA quarterfinals on Saturday. The score put the Blue Devils up 12-0 and they went on to win 41-21. Kenmore West will host Orchard Park in the semifinals. Photo by Patrick McPartlandPurchase color photos at www.BeeNews.com Some doubted that Kenmore West could defeat Lancaster in the Class AA quarterfinals after losing to their crosstown rival Kenmore East last week.

But the Blue Devils proved the doubters wrong as they took control from the beginning and won 41-21 on Saturday at home.

Kenmore West was the top seed in the AA North Division while Lancaster entered as the fourth seed the AA South Division.

“It was a dominating performance on both sides of the ball for us,” Kenmore West head coach Rich Harris said. “We controlled the line of scrimmage. It was a statement game for us, especially after losing to Ken East. And it was a big respect game playing North vs. South.”

Junior quarterback Deangelo Walker-Johnson opened the scoring for the Blue Devils with a pair of 4-yard touchdown runs to make it 12-0 early in the second quarter.

Lancaster responded with a 38-yard touchdown run by their own junior quarterback, Dan Speyer. That made it 12-7, but Lancaster would not be able cut the lead any closer.

Kenmore West went on to take a 26-7 lead at the half, thanks in large part to the success of their run game. Junior Terrell Ford had a monster day as he finished with 30 carries for 267 yards on the ground with two touchdowns.

At times the Blue Devils lined Ford up wide in order to use him as a decoy. That allowed Walker-Johnson to run up the middle and gain a total of 117 yards on the ground.

As a team, Kenmore

West ran for a total of

435 yards in the game.

“We had a great effort by our offensive line,” Harris said. “To have the ability to use Terrell as a decoy and run Deangelo up inside worked great. It’s hard [for the opponent] because you need an extra defender to cover Terrell.”

Dickson said that Lancaster knew going into the game the defense would have to key in on Ford, but they still just couldn’t stop him.

“Our plan was to make sure we had tabs on Ford and stop the run game,” he said. “Unfortunately that didn’t happen, he’s a heck of an athlete, and Ken West is a good football team took it to us.”

Lancaster cut the lead to 34-21 with 25 seconds left in the third quarter after Speyer threw a screen pass to Michael Scarpello who took it 28 yards for the score.

“He did a nice job of setting up the blocks and then broke a tackle to get in the endzone,” Dickson said.

In the fourth quarter, Lancaster forced the Blue Devils in a fourth-and-long situation. Kenmore West called for a fake punt and Tim Stoerr ran a sweep around the ride side to pick up a first down.

“At that point we felt they were making a comeback and we faked it to ice the game,” Harris said. “They weren’t containing on one side and we got some great blocking. Stoerr showed some toughness to finish the run and got the first down.”

With the win, Kenmore West will host Orchard Park at 2 p.m. on Saturday at Crosby Field. The Quakers earned the second seed in the AA South Division. Earlier in the season, Orchard Park defeated the Blue Devils 35-18 on Sept. 13.

“We didn’t have Deangelo or Mark Taylor that day, but now we have them back and we’re excited to try and get back to the Ralph for the first time since 1996,” Harris said. “I think the key is going to be which team that can run the ball better.

email: brandonk@beenews.com

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