It was season opening night for the Warriors. However, Cloudland came to spoil the party.
The ‘Landers pulled away late to take a 30-14 victory over Happy Valley on Friday night on Warrior Hill.
Cloudland took the opening drive and marched down the field as Austin Whitehead opened the scoring with a six-yard touchdown run. Happy Valley was able to get the offense rolling on their first drive, but Colby Birchfield stepped in front a pass to end the drive in the redzone.
The Warrior defense, however, responded by forcing Cloudland off the field on their 29, but Happy Valley was unable to capitalize on the field position. The Warriors answered as Seth Chesser jumped on a Cloudland fumble and rumbled into the end zone from two yards out, and the extra point gave HV a 7-6 advantage heading into the second quarter.
The teams traded possessions until Birchfield broke into the endzone from five yards out, and Whitehead added the two-point conversion to give CHS a 14-7 lead.
Happy Valley had chances to tie the game before half, but were unable to take advantage as the ‘Landers held the lead at the half.
In the second half, the Cloudland defense forced a three and out, but Happy Valley returned the favor by forcing a punt on the next possession. The Warriors nearly tied the game midway through the stanza, but another turnover left them empty handed on the possession.
The Warriors evened the scored when Mookie Madison scored on a 35-yard touchdown run to tie the game at 14-14 on the first play of the fourth quarter. Cloudland wasted no time in answering as Whitehead carried the ‘Landers down the field. The senior ended the drive with an eight-yard touchdown run.
The Cloudland defense rose to the occasion again as Whitehead intercepted a pass, and a couple of plays later the ‘Landers scored on a 17-yard run from Whitehead to cap off the scoring. Happy Valley moved into Cloudland territory with a rally in mind, but was unable to cross the goal line.
CHS iced the win by holding the ball the final 4:09 of the game.
Whitehead finished the game with 131 yards on 24 carries, while going 6-of-10 passing for 83 passing yards. Birchfield tallied 112 yards on the ground on 22 carries.
Madison tallied 96 yards to lead Happy Valley. Sage Haun led the Happy Valley offense with 93 yards.
Cloudland will hit the road to Oakdale next Friday night, while Happy Valley will welcome Sullivan North to Warrior Hill.
Cloudland Head Coach Brock Pittman
Happy Valley Head Coach Jason Jarrett