EAGLE RIVER — It had been 678 days since the last time the Wasilla High School football program scored a varsity win.
But the wait is finally over.
Wasilla opened the 2016 season with a 29-14 victory over Eagle River Friday night at Eagle River High School.
“It feels great, the kids were hungry...” First-year head coach Will Stout said after the victory. “They put the time and effort to get this victory.
The Warriors were hungry running for 284 yards against the Wolves, led by one-two punch of juniors Aeron Milliron and Sean McDermott.
“Milliron did have a good game. His offensive line did a great job blocking. The other backs did a great job running. Jaden Walkemeyer did a great job. Sean McDermott did a great job,” Stout said. “It’s a team effort, it’s not about one person. If one person goes out, we have someone to step up behind him.”
Milliron ran for a team-high 129 yards, while McDermott chipped in 94 yards. The team scored four rushing touchdowns that were highlighted by Milliron’s run in the second quarter where he ran for 59 yards knifing through the Wolves defense on his way to the end zone.
“This was my first varsity win,” Milliron said. “Cause last year we struggled. Man, my heart’s pumping right now. I am so excited. We pushed hard. I give it all to my line. They worked hard in practice, I appreciated it. They worked hard in the trenches, from start to finish.”
Despite some struggles to get a passing game going, the Warriors bounced back from early mistakes to hound the Wolves both on offense and defense in the second half. The Wolves also had some success in the air. Senior Thad Heagy who threw a 59-yard touchdown pass to junior Cameron Smith.
Early on the game looked like it was going to be a close game to the wire, as both teams were going toe to toe as one team would score, then the other team would answer right back. However, after Wasilla led 15-14 at halftime, the Warriors didn’t look back as they didn’t allow the Wolves to score with their defense locking them down. With sophomore Latrellus Colbert and junior Arron Martinez each recording a sack, they led the Warriors defense to forcing multiple turnover on downs on the Wolves in the second half.
With the new season upon the Warriors, it is always great to start off with a victory.
“It feels great, the kids are great.” Stout said after the win. “They’re competitive, they’re hungry for victories. They’re great, they’re great kids.”
Wasilla 29, Eagle River 14
Friday, Eagle River High School
Eagle River — George 2 run (kick failed)
Wasilla — Walkenmeyer 6 run (kick good)
Eagle River — Smith 59 pass from Heagy (2-pt conversion)
Wasilla — Milliron 59 run (2-pt conversion)
Wasilla — McDermott 29 run (kick good)
Wasilla — Milliron 1 run (kick good)
RUSHING — Wasilla: Cork 4-25, Milliron 8-129, McDermott 14-94, Walkeneyer 6-40, Hongslo 1-(-4); Eagle River: George 7-43, Porter 5-21, Heagy 7-35, Osbourne 7-26, Burningham 5-19.
PASSING — Wasilla: Honglso 0-5-1—0; Eagle River Heagy 3-8-1—73.
Receiving — Wasilla: none; Eagle River: Smith 3-73.