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Last Friday, the Williston Red Devil football team, all 18 players strong, hosted the Wildwood Wildcats at Booster Stadium.
Surprising to most Red Devil fans was the fact starting quarterback David Heinkel was dressed to play for the Red Devils. Heinkel was injured two weeks ago and was carried from the field.
The Wildcats started the game with a quick on side kickoff and fell on the football at the Red Devil 48-yard line. The Red Devil defense held and the Wildcats had to punt.
On the second offensive play of the game for the Red Devils, Heinkel hit Damien Strange with a deep pass and Strange took it to the end zone for a Red Devil touchdown. Jorge Deciderio, who was sidelined with an ankle injury, was not dressed for the Red Devils forcing Heinkel to try the PAT. The kick was no good as the Red Devils took a 6-0 lead.
After forcing the Wildcats to punt, the Red Devils took over at their 45-yard line. Heinkel led the Red Devils down to the Wildcat 11 yard line where Keith Neal blasted in for the touchdown. Heinkel ran the two point try and the Red Devils were out to a quick 14-0 lead.
The Wildcats were not ready to roll over as the second quarter began. On their first play of the second quarter Wildcat Kendrick Brown ran through the Red Devil defense for a 71 yard touchdown.
Lining up for the PAT the Red Devils jumped off sides. With the ball moved to the 1 yard line, the Wildcats tried for two. The Red Devil defense stopped the try and the score was now 14-6.
The Wildcats attempted another on side kickoff but the Red Devils were ready and fell on the football.
On their second play from scrimmage, the Red Devils fumbled the football and the Wildcats picked up the ball and returned it 45 yards for a touchdown. With the score now 14-12 the Wildcats went for the two point try. The Red Devil defense denied the end zone to the Wildcats as the score remained 14-12.
The Wildcats attempted their third on side kickoff of the first half and this time they recovered the football at the Red Devil 46 -yard line. Brown again broke through the Red Devil defense for a touchdown but, this one was called back for a holding penalty at the 30 yard line.
The Red Devil defense held at their 21-yard line and the Wildcats tried a 31 yard field goal. The field goal was good and the Wildcats took a 15-14 lead with seven minutes left in the first half.
This time the Wildcats kickoff was deep to the end zone as the Red Devils took over at their own 20-yard line. On the first play from scrimmage Heinkel lofted a bomb to Strange for an 80 yard touchdown. The Heinkel run for the two point try lifted the Red Devils to a 22-15 lead. The Red Devils forced a punt and threatened again right before halftime. Heinkel hit Tyus Williams with a pass to the 3-yard line with 1:06 on the clock. On fourth down after running the clock down to 226 seconds, the Red Devils failed to score. The first half ended with the Red Devils holding a 22-15 lead.
As the second half got underway it was another Red Devil fumble that was picked up by the Wildcats and returned for a touchdown. The PAT was good and the game was tied 22-22.
The Wildcats tried their fourth on side kick of the night but, Red Devil Tad Donald picked up the ball and returned it to the Wildcat 2-yard line. Keith Neal again punched the ball in for the Red Devil touchdown. The PAT was again no good as the Red Devils took a 28-22 lead.
Neither team could get anything going as the third quarter ended at 28-22.
The Red Devils began another drive in the fourth and final quarter with Heinkel on the bench following a hard hit on a run. Quarterback Stephen Cochlin threw a perfect pass in the end zone to Strange who had three Wildcats draped over him. Strange grabbed his third touchdown pass of the night. The two point try was no good as the Red Devils held a 34-22 lead.
Following several exchanges of the football the Wildcats began another drive, following another Red Devil fumble with 1:54 seconds left in the game. On the final play of the game the Wildcats scored as the clock ran down to zero time remaining. With no PAT try the final score was Red Devils 34 Wildwood 28.
The Red Devils have an open Friday as they will have to begin getting ready for some very tough games coming up.
The Red Devils are back in action Oct. 12 as they host Fort White. They are at home again on Oct. 19 as they host a much improved Chiefland Indians team. Their final home game of the season and Senior Night will be on Oct. 26, as they host the Union County Tigers. The Tigers are the defending 1A State Champions, and currently ranked number 1 this season.
The 2012 Red Devils end their season on the road at Dixie County Nov. 2 and then at Dunnellon Nov. 9.