West Port too physical for Newberry


Newberry’s Tray Presley, right, tries to get past an Ocala West Port defender in Newberry on Friday.

Erica Brough/Staff photographer
Published: Friday, September 28, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, September 29, 2012 at 1:22 a.m.

NEWBERRY — Facing a bigger, more physical school on homecoming night, Newberry coach Chris Baker took a big gamble in his matchup with Ocala West Port.

The gamble backfired in Newberry's 28-27 overtime loss to West Port.

Up 27-21 after Newberry senior Ra'kheem Hoyt's two-yard TD run, Baker elected to go for two points in the first possession of overtime. But Hoyt was stuffed by West Port's defense on the two-point try.

West Port won the game on a 10-yard TD pass on a screen play from quarterback Kalen Woodyard to running back Alfonso Randolph. Kicker Kyle Haworth clinched the win with his fourth extra point in four attempts.

“We were tired,” Baker said. “Facing a bigger, more physical team. I felt like it was the right thing to do in that situation.”

Newberry freshman kicker Alex Files also had an extra-point attempt blocked early in the fourth quarter, helping West Port retain a slim 14-13 lead.

“I have confidence in Alex,” Baker said. “Again in that situation, I just wanted to try to get out of there with the win and not have the game prolonged.”

Returning from a three-game disciplinary suspension, Hoyt rushed for 195 yards and four touchdowns. His 51-yard TD run cut West Port's lead to 14-13 and his 33-yard TD run and two-point conversion run tied the score at 21 before the end of regulation.

“He ran the ball hard,” Baker said. “Our whole team did, really. We were getting some good blocks downfield.”

But facing a 7A school, 1A Newberry (3-2) could not stop West Port's read-option offense. Woodward rushed for 201 yards on 13 carries. Four of his carries were for 28 yards for more, including an early 49-yard TD run.

“He ate us up with the read-option,” Baker said.

Newberry tied the score at 7 on Hoyt's 23-yard TD late in the first quarter. Baker said he's hopeful that Hoyt has learned from sitting three games early this season.

“Time will tell,” Baker said. “He's doing the right things in practice, working hard. We've got a big district game with Chiefland coming up so hopefully our whole team will heal up and be ready to play.”

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