September 15, 2017
It’s been a rough two and one-half year stretch for the Northwood football team.
The Timberwolves have lost 22 of their last 25 games, including seven in a row entering Thursday evening’s nonleague contest at Santa Ana Valley.
However, Northwood (1-3) showed the heart of a champion as it rallied from a double-digit deficit in the second half to defeat the Falcons, 29-25.
It marked the Timberwolves’ first win since their one-point victory over Irvine nearly a year ago.
But following the game, the Northwood players were all smiles.
‘We needed this one,” said Timberwolves coach Pete Mitchell. “We made adjustments in the second half. We didn’t stop (Malcolm Wesley) but we found a way to slow him down.”
Wesley rushed for 401 yards on 43 carries. He scored four first half touchdowns but the Northwood defense shut the Falcons down in the second half.
Trailing, 25-13, at halftime, the Timberwolves capitalized on a Santa Ana Valley turnover late in the third quarter. Seth Locke, who was called upon to step in as quarterback for Trevor Littlejohn several times throughout the game, capped a 7-play, 46-yard scoring drive with a 2-yard TD run.
Locke then completed a 2-point conversion pass to James Mazzeo cutting the lead to 25-21with 3:05 left in the quarter.
After having the wind knocked out of him and getting sick in the locker-room at halftime, Littlejohn rebounded to spark the go-ahead fourth quarter scoring drive. Littlejohn highlighted the drive by completing a 65-yard pass play to Luke Demaio to the Santa Ana Valley 15.
On the next play, Littlejohn tossed a 15-yard TD pass to Mike Coleman. Coleman then caught a deflected pass for the 2-point conversion to up the Timberwolves’ lead to 29-21 with 8:33 to play.
“Man, it just feels great to get that first win as a senior,” said Coleman.
The Northwood defense stiffened and stopped the Falcons twice on fourth downs plays in the final minutes to secure the win.
“It feels amazing,” said Littlejohn, who rushed for 103 yards and threw for 188 yards and two TDs. “We fought hard and didn’t give up.”