By Evan Grice
All good things come to those who wait, and for the Piedmont Wildcats football team, their wait for win number one is finally over.
PHS used a balanced offensive attack to smother Western Heights as the Wildcats jumped out to a 21-0 lead, which eventually became a 42-12 victory on homecoming night at Stout Field.
“You really couldn’t have timed this better for our kids,” Piedmont coach Craig Church said about the win. “This was something we needed to get out of our system, especially before district starts.”
“We had a lot of guys out of position on defense, but they stepped up tonight. You could see the excitement and hear it in our coaches’ voices. I’m very proud of the kids.”
By the time Landon White found the end zone on a four yard run for his first touchdown of the season with eight minutes left in the fourth quarter, Piedmont was well in command at 42-6.
But, not everything went smoothly on the evening as Wildcat fans had to endure a first quarter which saw more penalties than points from both teams, sending the game to the second quarter tied at 0-0.
Just eight seconds into the second frame though, PHS struck pay dirt through the air.
Quarterback Lucas Richert found Blakely Liebmann for a 20-yard touchdown strike, to put Piedmont up 7-0 after the Butch Hampton extra point.
Liebmann would also score again in the third quarter from six yards out to make it 28-0 at the 10:20 mark.
“Everyone played great tonight out there,” Richert said. “We finally got that monkey off our back, and our confidence is sky high right now. Our defense did great getting us the ball tonight and they have been great all season long. I feel very confident going into district with these guys.”
Richert finished the evening with a season-high 141 yards passing with one touchdown on the evening on 11-for-18 passing.
Perhaps the biggest play of the night came from the Wildcat defense in the third quarter, when Western Heights was lining up in punt formation.
Colby Bricker found his way through the line, and blocked the attempted punt, to which teammate Carson Cooper scooped up the ball and ran in from 15-yards out for the touchdown to make it 35-0 at the 8:57 mark of the third.
Darrius Burris also collected his first touchdown of the season; when he punched it in from two yards out to give Piedmont a 14-0 lead at the 10:13 mark of the first half.
Josh Hampton finished off the scoring in the second quarter for the Wildcats when he scored from one-yard out with less than five minutes remaining before halftime.
Western Heights scored both of its touchdowns in the fourth quarter of the contest.
Landon White finished with 11 carries for 77 yards, while Darrius Burris carried the ball 18 times for 83 yards on the ground. Blakely Liebmann also had a big game, totaling 111 yards rushing and receiving on the night.
Piedmont (1-2) will travel to Woodward (2-1) for its district opener Friday night at 7:30 p.m.