Green Wave start playoffs on the right note

Junior Jaquarius Thomas (42) looks on with Green Wave coach Chris Chambless during Friday night’s win against Provine.
For Daily Times Leader

The West Point Green Wave started the postseason on the right note when they sent the Provine Rams back home with a 49-28 loss in the opening round of the Class 5A playoffs.

The Green Wave were guilty of a roughing the kicker penalty on their first defensive drive, which led to a Provine touchdown a few plays later. The Green Wave went on to score 35 points in the first half.

West Point head coach Chris Chambless commented on how his team woke up after the first Provine touchdown.

“As long as I am around, West Point teams are never going to give in,” Chambless said. “We’re going to always fight until the last whistle. Our seniors did a good job of settling everybody down. It’s easy for players to get down some, but not our guys. They kept playing and they had fun, and that’s what it’s all about.”

The Green Wave defense had a night to remember, forcing six turnovers, with five of those being interceptions, and with two of those interceptions resulting in touchdowns by Jordan Rupert and Jacoby McQuiller.
After the game, Rupert said his 70-yard pick six in the first half came through preparation.

“We practice for scenarios like that a lot so it was nothing new for me,” Rupert said. “I just saw the ball in the air heading in my direction, so I went up, got it, and then I saw a lane so I just went after it.”

The offense also had a great night with Brandon Harris and Tae Gibbs each scoring a pair of touchdowns, along with a 65-yard scoring run by Jimothy Mays.

Harris and the rest of the team knew that Friday night would not be an easy night with it being the first round. He was pleased with pleased with the way West Point prepared and executed.

“Coach told us earlier this week that Provine is a good team and that they play hard, so we just played harder and didn’t quit until the final whistle,” Harris said.

Harris also said that the defense was a huge help for him and the offense when the unit forced six turnovers and had two touchdowns of its own.

Chambless said that playoff runs are what he looks forward to for his senior class each year.

“Every year before the playoffs, I tell the seniors that we’re going to go as far as they want to go,” Chambless said. “We have great senior leadership this year. They like to make big plays and make differences in each game, which is something that the young guys look up to.”

The Green Wave will be back in action next Friday night when they host the Lafayette Commodores in the second round.