First game, first win for Huskies on opening night
By RICKY RUSTON/For the Reporter
The Helena Huskies (1-0, 0-0) opened their inaugural football season with a 30-15 road win over the Shelby County Wildcats (0-2, 0-0) Aug. 29.
It was a tale of two programs at Papa McCombs Stadium Friday night. One celebrating 100 years of history while another was starting year one of the journey. When the final horn sounded, the husky nation left Columbiana with a win to remember – the first one in school history. The Wildcats have redeployed toughness and grit to start off their centennial season after experiencing a two-year setback.
Eight plays into to the first, Husky quarterback, Diondre Sackreiter, connected with Devan Walker in the flat en route to the Wildcat end zone from the 45-yard line. After a missed point after attempt, the Husky’s held the 6-0 lead.
On the ensuing drive, the Wildcats answered when Austin Childers hit pay dirt around right end from the 19-yard line. Halfway through the first, the Wildcats held the slim 7-6 lead.
The Huskies then put together a fruitful 14-play scoring drive from their own 25-yard line that ended when Nash Adams bolted up the middle for a 4-yard scoring run. After a successful PAT, the visitors reclaimed the lead, 13-7.
As the half approached, Husky kicker Jack Reid provided a bit of a cushion to the lead with a 24-yard field to extend the margin 16-7.
Just under a minute before half, a long Wildcat scoring run by Jamarius Mayfield was negated by a penalty and it was a game changer as it would have brought SCHS within two points heading into intermission. After two Husky penalties, the half ended with a missed 23-yard Wildcat field goal attempt.
To open the third quarter, Austin Davis returned an overthrown ball by Wildcat quarterback, Mason Bythe, for a 31-yard score, a four and out series and two fumbles under center stalled the Wildcats from any momentum in the second half.
The Huskies extended the lead to 30-7 two plays into the fourth when Sckreiter connected with Jake Busby from the Wildcat 32-yard line.
With just over eleven minutes remaining, SCHS sent a late shot over the bow when Blythe connected with Mack Slaughter for 30-yard scoring strike. Sparks flew, literally, when Childers converted a 2-pt conversion. With Papa McCombs Stadium half lit, the Husky’s had done enough to hold on – despite a power outage.
“I am really proud of our guys tonight as it was their first time to play a full ballgame together,” Husky head coach Watt Parker said. “We played a very physical, supreme football team tonight and we still have a lot a to learn. I was proud to see the support tonight, it was phenomenal.”
Helena moves on to take on Wilcox-Central on the road, while Shelby County plays host to Central-Clay on Sept. 5.