— By GREG WEBB
ARLINGTON — While the Weatherford Kangaroo offense endeavors to extend its effectiveness to complete-game capacity, the Roo defense is yet tasked to stem opponents’ scoring tide. A very talented Arlington Bowie team illustrated the work-in-progress status of the Weatherford condition with a 55-6 win on Thursday.
The outset of the game took on an encouraging, and familiar flavor.
Starting at its own 7-yard line, WHS quarterback Grant Werts guided the offense upfield as the play-calling provided a good, and effective, mix to move the ball near mid-field.
Even when the drive stalled at the 43, the Roos had at least won an early-game field position battle. A fake-punt ruse that very-nearly gave the Roos added momentum failed and the Weatherford defense had its first test of the night.
Forcing the Volunteers to a fourth-down situation, the athleticism of Bowie quarterback Tony James produced the first of multiple big gains on the night, which has proved to be the bane of the Roo defense through the first four contests of the season.
James, who started at quarterback, moved out to wide receiver at the end of the first quarter, ceding the quarterback slot to senior Keaton Perry, who was thought to be done for the season with a knee injury suffered two weeks hence.
After a pair of misfires, Perry connected with James for a 83-yard scoring strike, as Bowie went up 21-0 at the end of the opening period.
The senior made several more appearances with his heavily-trussed knee and was effective as purely a pocket passer on this night, finishing with more than 200 passing yards, completing eight passes, four of those for TDs.
The Weatherford offense mounted a drive early in the second quarter to try to answer, but the march stalled deep in Vols territory when a fourth-and-ten run attempt fell short.
Bowie scored on long-range strikes (running and passing) of 21, 52, 83, 55 and 68 yards.
Weatherford’s lone score came in the third quarter, after the defense forced a Bowie fumble at the Volunteer’s 6-yard line. Werts took the ball in from the six on a keeper.
As the Weatherford coaching staff persists in coaching the Roos up, another formidable challenge looms, with Arlington Martin is due to visit on Friday. The Warriors are considered the other top-echelon team of District 3-5A, on a par with Bowie.
After getting walloped by DeSoto, Martin has won three-straight, including its district opener against Arlington High on Friday.
But regardless of the next opponent, Weatherford has turned efforts inward to shore up the defense, and in hopes the offense can finish games in the manner it has consistently started them.