Varsity football caps off Homecoming with big win over Bowie

University of Texas freshman quarterback and former Westlake student Sam Ehlinger was one of the many fans in attendance for the Homecoming football game on Friday night. Varsity football beat Bowie, scoring seven touchdowns en route to a 49-7 final score.

Although senior Nakia Watson has been the primary offensive threat thus far this season, it was quarterback junior Taylor Anderson who led the Chaps Friday night, throwing for 152 yards with a 66.7 completion percentage for two passing touchdowns and added a pair of rushing touchdowns.

“I’ve never known a Homecoming to be very good unless you win the football game,” head coach Todd Dodge said. “Everyone has a role in homecoming, and our role as a football team is to go out and play extremely hard.”

The game started with a bang and remained chippy throughout. Receiver senior Jacob Ramos was ejected for fighting Bowie defensive back Quintavious Buckner after the whistle early in the game.

The rest of the first quarter was not short of action, with a Westlake interception on Bowie’s first offensive drive leading to a 10-yard touchdown pass to receiver junior Michael Granson. After a kickoff returned for a touchdown by Bowie, the game seemed to be a competitive one. But Anderson would open the lead for the Chaps with a rushing touchdown, and they wouldn’t look back.

The Chaps’ running game got off to a relatively slow start, but Dodge was able to adjust to what the defense was giving him.

“One of the things you have to do against a team like [Bowie] is when they play six in the box against our base sets, you have to have a lot of quarterback zone read type stuff,” Dodge said. “Taylor Anderson did a tremendous job tonight reading the unblocked defender.”

Westlake were able to tack on one more touchdown in the second quarter, a 3-yard rush from Nakia. The first half concluded with the Chaps ahead 21-7.

After the halftime Homecoming festivities, the second half began with a 7-yard touchdown pass to Nakia Watson from Taylor Anderson to make the game 28-7. Quickly after the touchdown, Westlake continued to impress with another interception to end Bowie’s drive. On the next drive, the Chaps scored again with a 7-yard touchdown pass from Anderson, caught by senior receiver Tate Young, to make the game 35-7 with 3:48 left in the third quarter.

“[The team showed] toughness and physicality,” Dodge said. “It’s something we’ve already found out about. I challenge [the players] every week to be who they are, a very physical, hard-nosed football team.”

The game ended with two more Westlake touchdowns, a Taylor Anderson touchdown run and a pick-six to finish the Bulldogs off, 49-7.

Some of Westlake’s premier players from last season paid a visit to Eddie Neptune Field and to their old head coach.

“Of course I miss [high school games],” Ehlinger said, “This is the best level of football, and I miss being out here with the guys I grew up with.”