Loudoun County bounces back in a big way
One week after suffering their first loss, the Loudoun County Raiders rebounded in a big way Sept. 28 against the previously unbeaten Woodgrove Wolverines. The Raiders built a 34-0 halftime lead on their way to a 48-7 thrashing of the host Wolverines on senior night in Purcellville.
“We were obviously disappointed how we played last week. We lost to a good Tuscarora team but we felt we didn’t put our best foot forward,” Loudoun County coach Todd Hill said.
“We wanted to make amends for that. We had a great week of practice,” Hill continued. “We felt we needed to come out tonight against a good Woodgrove team and correct the mistakes we made last week and we felt we did that. I was very pleased with how our team played tonight.”
Senior quarterback Jake Lokey led the Raiders’ charge with his arm as well as his legs. Lokey passed for five touchdowns and also gained 83 yards on five rushing attempts.
“It was a hard loss for us last week,” Lokey said. “We wanted to get the job done.”
Woodgrove (3-1 in the AA Dulles District, 5-1 overall) took the opening kickoff on its own 20-yard line and drove the ball to the Raiders’ 31 before senior Deron
Davis scooped up a fumble and raced 69 yards untouched to put Loudoun County on top for good.
“Obviously any time you have a turnover and give up field position it’s a big momentum swing,” Hill said, “We work on that every week with strip drills and fumble recoveries.”
Loudoun County (2-1, 4-1) used a variety of receivers to spread the ball around, appearing to throw the Wolverine defense off balance.
“We have a five good wide [receiver] set, everyone is an option.” Lokey said about his selection of multiple targets.
With the Raiders’ offensive line giving him time to scan the field and find the open man, Lokey connected with three receivers - Brad Szoka, Quan Stinger and Isiah Jackson - on his five touchdown passes.
Szoka led the trio with three touchdown receptions, while Lokey’s 80-yard touchdown pass to Jackson on the first offensive play of the second half put the game away.
“I didn’t get touched,” said Lokey, crediting his line. “We just had a great game all-around.”
After the initial drive, Woodgrove did not mount much of a scoring threat until Josh Sweet’s 4-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter. Sweet finished with 185 rushing yards to eclipse 1,000 yards on the year.
The Raiders’ victory leaves Briar Woods - a 35-6 winner against Tuscarora - as the lone undefeated team in the Dulles District. Loudoun County, Woodgrove and Tuscarora each have one district loss.
In the latest VHSL Region II Division 4 playoff power ratings, Briar Woods sits first at 25.0, followed by Loudoun County (23.6), Tuscarora (22.4) and Woodgrove (20.66).
Loudoun County 48, Woodgrove 7
LC: Davis 69 fumble recovery (Andrade kick), 7:37
LC: Szoka 17 pass from Lokey (Andrade kick), 3:36
LC: Szoka 10 pass from Lokey (kick blocked), 5:11
LC: Szoka 46 pass from Lokey (Andrade kick), 3:51
LC: Stinger 14 pass from Lokey (Andrade kick), 0:01
LC: Jackson 80 pass from Lokey (Andrade kick), 11:44
LC: Pratt 74 run (Andrade kick), 6:47
W: Sweet 4 run (Warfel kick), 1:58
-Rushing: LC - Lokey (5 for 83 yards), Pratt (1 for 74 yards, TD); W - Sweet (32 for 185 yards, TD) Coil (7 for 34 yards)
-Passing: LC - Lokey (12 of 18 for 247 yards, 5 TD); W - Coil (3 of 8 for 28 yards, Int.)
-Receiving: LC - Szoka (5 for 108 yards, 3 TD), Jackson (1 for 80 yards, TD); W - Miller (2 for 27 yards)
-All photos by Michael “Moe” Murphy
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