Special to the Times-Georgian
A dominant defense and a high-powered offense was on display at Ra-Lin Field on Saturday evening as the 22nd-ranked West Georgia Wolves raced past Morehouse, 47-0 in the 2021 home opener.
Playing at home for the first time in nearly 700 days, the Wolves allowed just four first downs and 122 total yards of offense, shutting out Morehouse in what was just the fourth meeting between the nearby teams.
For the Wolves, it was the first shutout since 2017, and the second straight game to allow less than 200 yards of total offense to start the 2021 campaign.
The offense was equally impressive on a perfect evening for football in Carrollton. The Wolves ran for 229 and threw for 318 yards, totaling 547 yards of offense, giving Dean’s squad 1,044 yards of offense through two games thus far.
After a defensive three-and-out to start the game, the offense went to work, quickly driving to the one-yard line before the drive stalled and Morehouse forced a turnover on downs. But the defense gave up nothing and on the ensuing punt, the Morehouse punter stepped on the end line for a safety, and gave the Wolves the 2-0 lead.
From there, it was Christian Royalston with a 13-yard score that was followed by junior quarterback Harrison Frost connecting with Quan Harrison for a 69-yard score to put the Wolves up 16-0 after a quarter of play.
West Georgia scored three times in the second period, first on a second Christian Royalston touchdown. This time, the sophomore running back found the endzone from the four-yard line with 9:32 left in the half.
Senior Tyray Devezin got in on the action later in the quarter as he scored his first touchdown of his UWG career, weaving his way to the endzone from 29 yards out.
The final touchdown of the quarter was Frost to senior Mechane Slade for the third time this season, putting West Georgia up 37-0 at the break.
With reserves on the field for the majority of the final two quarters, West Georgia added 10 second half points. Omar Cervantes knocked through a 46-yard field goal midway through the third quarter that made it 40-0. In the fourth quarter, Garrett Bass found Za’Tarious Anderson on a beautiful fade route from the 13-yard line, accounting for the final margin of 47-0. It was the first career touchdown for Anderson, the Albany native.
Frost ended the night 18-of-30 for 273 yards and the two scores. Fifteen different receivers hauled in passes on the night, led by Phil Patterson and Tay Huff who each had three receptions.
On the ground, Semaje Banks and Devezin each rushed for over 60 yards with Banks leading all rushers with 69 yards on nine carries. Devezin finished his first game in University Stadium with 64 yards while sophomore Rajaez Mosley had 59.
Not only did the Wolves hold their opponent under 200 yards of offense for a second straight game, but the UWG defense also had two takeaways for a second consecutive game. Raekwon Chatman, who led the Wolves in tackles with 3.5, had a first quarter interception that set up the long TD pass from Frost to Harrison. UWG also forced a fumble late in the game that preserved the shutout.
West Georgia now turns its focus to Gulf South Conference play which opens next week as the Delta State Statesmen come to town.
Kickoff for next week’s showdown on Ra-Lin Field is set for 6 p.m.