WOODSTOCK — Johns Creek’s offense didn’t stand a chance against a stout Woodstock defensive front Friday night, in the Wolverines’ 9-0 shutout win.
Woodstock (2-0) stuffed the middle and cut off the edges in the running game, and it kept the pressure on the quarterback as Johns Creek (0-1) gained a meager 59 yards of total offense.
The Wolverines held Johns Creek to less than 1 yard per carry on the night as the Gladiators had 19 yards on 25 carries. Johns Creek quarterback Kevin Nalecz only had 18 yards through the air, until the Gladiators’ final drive of the night.
Woodstock also caused three fumbles, recovering one, and intercepted Nalecz twice.
“I thought our defense played exceptionally well. Coach (Oz) Price and the defensive staff had our kids well-coached up, and they went in and executed it,” Woodstock coach Brent Budde said. “They did a great job of getting after the ball and creating some turnovers and just didn’t give up any big plays.”
Linebacker Jacob Schoeb said defensive domination is something of a family affair in Woodstock.
“We trust in our teammates. It is all about family,” Schoeb said. “We just work together. We love each other, and that is all that matters.”
Woodstock’s offense didn’t fare much better than its counterpart in the scoring department, as Christian Alfaro’s 21-yard field goal in the second quarter represented the only points on the board until late in the fourth quarter.
Woodstock quarterback Justin Agner stood in the pocket, took a knock from Johns Creek’s defensive front and pushed the Woodstock lead to 9-0 when he found Reagan Amos for a 6-yard touchdown through the air, on fourth-and-goal.
“It was just fourth down, and I knew I just had to throw it and, hopefully, make a play,” Agner said. “I will do anything for this team. I will stay in there that extra second to get that two-possession lead we needed.”
Agner connected on his final five pass attempts and finished the game 14-of-20 for 104 yards. He also added 24 yards on 18 carries on the ground.
Donovan Brand led all rushers with 57 yards on 15 carries.
Budde said the win may have been a different kind of win than the Wolverines’ season-opening 42-7 victory at River Ridge, but this game may help his squad more heading into region play.
“I think this is what we needed. We needed a grind. Our whole region is going to be a grind,” said Budde, who opens Region 5AAAAAA play by hosting Wheeler next week. “I guarantee you, we got a lot better (Friday) than we did last week, because it was a contest. People had to dig down deep, and we got to see who was going to make big plays. For the most part, we stepped up and made the big play on defense, and we made a couple on offense.”