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West Ashley High School

Wildcats looking to finish strong after tough losses

 

By David Shelton

Senior Writer

Charleston – A 2-0 start was followed by an unexpected two week layoff and the West Ashley High football team has struggled to find the consistency needed to win games.

The Wildcats opened the season with wins over Colleton County and Bishop England. Hurricane Irma cancelled a scheduled game with Charlotte Christian and that off week was followed by a the bye week already on the schedule.

Since the layoff, the Wildcats have lost competitive games to Ashley Ridge (24-21), Goose Creek (31-16) and Summerville (25-22). Heading into the final month of the regular season, the Wildcats need a strong finish, which means winning region 7-AAAAA games.

West Ashley plays James Island on October 6th, then finishes with games against Stratford, Fort Dorchester and Wando. Two victories over the stretch would likely secure a spot in the AAAAA playoff bracket.

The biggest issue early on has been penalties. The Wildcats have been flagged 44 times in the first five games, including 10 times in the loss to Summerville.

Defensively, West Ashley has several players offering solid contributions. As a unit, the Wildcats have racked up 16 sacks and 44 tackles for loss in five games.

Malachi Grant has 19 total tackles but 5.5 tackles for loss and three sacks. Linebacker Kamden Middleton has 29 tackles and Jay Smith, an end, has 22 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss and two sacks.

Ja’Xavier Legare has 21 tackles and five tackles for loss and Oliver McNeal has 18 tackles, a team-high eight tackles for loss, and two sacks. Myles White has 20 total tackles and Antonio Knox has 16.5 tackles, three for loss and two sacks.

On the offensive side, junior quarterback Kenyatta Jenkins is having a solid campaign as a first-year starter. Jenkins is the team’s leading rusher with 488 yards and seven touchdowns. He also has completed 56 of 97 passes for 580 yards and four touchdowns.

Jordan Pettigrew and Yaphett Bienvenu have been solid in the running game as well. Bienvenu has gained 288 yards and scored three touchdowns while Pettigrew has gained 291 yards. Pettigrew had 170 yards rushing in the loss to Summerville.

Leading the receiving corps is Dominique Kershaw, who has 18 catches for more than 200 yards. Dwalynn Deleston has 14 grabs for 104 yards.

 

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