Officially it was Heritage’s Senior Night, but it also could have been called Program Night as the Huskies won seven games for the first time in the school’s four years of varsity play.
Heritage started the first and second halves with touchdown drives to control the momentum for a 40-21 victory over Wakefield on Friday night on the Huskies’ field.
“This year our team has come together better than any other year,” said senior tight end Jeff Gemmell, who is bound for UNC Charlotte. “From working in the weight room to offseason training, there is more unity on this team than we’ve ever had.”
The No. 11-ranked Huskies improved to 7-3 overall and 4-2 in the Cap 8 4A. Wakefield dropped to 5-5 and 3-3 in the conference.
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Heritage opened with an impressive six-play, 59-yard touchdown for a 7-0 lead less than three minutes into the game. Gemmell recovered a fumble in the end zone after Matt Baker was hit at the goal line on a 10-yard run.
Wakefield took the ensuing kickoff and drove to Heritage’s 29-yard line, but the Huskies’ stopped a fourth-and-1 play for no gain. Linebacker Tyler Crowther and defensive back Brandon Felton met quarterback Matt McKay at the line.
Six plays later Heritage quarterback Blake Walters hit tight end Gemmell for a 36-yard touchdown pass for a 14-0 lead. He caught the ball above his head at the 15, sidestepped a tackler and cruised into the end zone.
“Look at this program now,” Gemmell said. “We’ve got our seventh win and next week we’ll work on getting our eighth. We’re excited about going into the playoffs.”
Wakefield made a game of it when the Wolverines scored on a 20-yard touchdown pass from McKay to Dontel Dunston as time expired in the first half. The Wolverines then took the second half kickoff and scored on a 33-yard pass from McKay to Marius Cooper to trim the deficit to 28-14.
But Heritage responded with a 15-play, 97-yard touchdown drive that consumed 7:38 on the clock for a 34-14 lead on a 3-yard run by Walters.
Baker led the Huskies with 32 carries for 212 yards and two touchdowns. Gemmell caught two balls for 54 yards and had a sack on defense. Walters was 9-of-11 for 114 yards with two touchdowns.
Dunston caught six passes for 135 yards and two touchdowns for Wakfield.