Written by SportsDayDFW.com
West Mesquite holds off Forney to claim sixth straight playoff berth
FORNEY — West Mesquite could think about its sixth consecutive state playoff berth after its 16-10 victory over Forney at City Bank Stadium. A little more than a month ago, West Mesquite wasn’t thinking about much other than an injury plagued 0-4 start.
“I can’t say how proud I am of these kids and my coaching staff,” Wranglers coach Mike Overton said. “We were thinking, ‘how can we turn this thing around?’ But that’s the thing about young kids, they came to practice every day determined to get better. We were thinking just about getting a win in a district as tough as ours and we win five of the last six.”
West Mesquite (5-5, 5-3) will play Pflugerville Hendrickson at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Waco ISD Stadium in a rematch of last year’s Class 4A first-round game. West Mesquite, which advanced three rounds last season, returns to the playoffs with a more youthful depth-chart which held off Forney (2-8, 1-7) knowing the Wranglers could qualify with a win to take fourth-place in District 15-4A.
West Mesquite jumped to a 7-0 lead on the opening kickoff but, typical of its season, it wasn’t the standard opening score. Junior Will Early picked up a Forney fumble and returned it 31-yards for the touchdown in the first 12 seconds.
West Mesquite had to rely heavily on its defense to hold off Forney. Heralded junior safety Kameron Miles had two interceptions. The first came at West Mesquite’s 15-yard line just before the half and the last at midfield to stop Forney’s final possession. Miles, along with senior linebacker Alex Reason and juniors Darryl Battles, Nick Akins and Andre Thompson, limited Forney to one big play — a 77-yard quarterback draw for a touchdown by senior quarterback Patric Youngman. Forney totaled 331 yards but lost four turnovers. Forney had a 42-yard field goal attempt bounce off the crossbar and also had two other attempts go awry.
West Mesquite had to punt six times but got another touchdown on a big play as sophomore William Stanley caught a 47-yard pass from sophomore quarterback Shateek Nasir for a 16-7 lead late in the third quarter.