Lindale Hangs on to Beat Whitehouse, 19-14
LINDALE -- Flint Herrington stepped back and chucked a pass in desperation.
Whitehouse trailed Lindale with seconds remaining in a crucial district matchup. Herrington's pass was a last-ditch effort to put the Wildcats up. Instead, it fell into the hands of Airik Williams for his second interception of the night. He ran out the remainder of the clock to give the Eagles a 19-14 victory.
“That young man is incredible," coach Chris Cochran said. "He had a pick-six last week and then he gets one in the first half and seals the game right there. He’s an incredible young man. He’s turning into a leader for us as a sophomore.”
Williams' first interception came with 10:43 in the second quarter on another deep throw from Herrington. He returned that one 24 yards.
Defense was key for Lindale (4-3, 3-1 District 9-5A Division II) all evening. The Eagles held Whitehouse to just 37 yards rushing. They forced three turnovers -- two of which came late in the fourth quarter. On the drive prior to Williams' interception, the Eagles forced a fumble from Ken'Della Wood. Matthew Grady recovered the ball at the Lindale 32.
Lindale failed to get a first down on the ensuing drive, giving the ball back to Whitehouse with 18 seconds remaining.
“Defensively, that’s the best we’ve played all year by far," Cochran said. "It was on a night that our offense didn’t really produce the way that they have. That’s what the team is about. We executed on special teams for the most part. We executed on defense. We kind of picked up the slack for our offense. Our offense came through when it mattered. We’re down there in the fourth quarter and they found a way to go score.”
After Carter Adams scored on a 2-yard run and Cameron Cantrell converted the two-point conversion, Whitehouse (5-2, 3-1) had its first lead with 1:23 left in the third. For the first time all evening, Lindale felt pressure to score quickly.
The Eagles responded with a drive that ended with Jordan Jenkins scoring an 8-yard touchdown run to put them ahead for good. Jenkins led the offense all evening, finishing with 128 yards and two touchdowns.
On his first touchdown, which came during the second quarter, he shoulder checked a Whitehouse defender to the ground on his way to a 62-yard run.
“He’s a big dude," Cochran said. "We’re wanting to put weight on him and that’ll come. He ran mad there. It wasn’t his best night either, but he made plays when it mattered. That score that he had – he was hurting all night – he found a way. He was huge for us.”
Lindale also converted 7-of-14 third downs, several of which extended scoring drives. Dillon Heinaman finished with 143 yards passing and a touchdown.
Herrington led the Whitehouse offense with 237 yards passing and a touchdown. Cantrell was his favorite target, finishing with 95 yards and a touchdown on six receptions.
The victory moves Lindale to second place in District 9-5A and puts the Eagles in prime position to make the playoffs. It drops Whitehouse to third place. Marshall remains atop the district after a 31-0 victory against Jacksonville.
Lindale will look to build on its winning streak when it faces Mount Pleasant at 7:30 p.m. Friday in Mount Pleasant. Whitehouse hosts Pine Tree at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
“Mount Pleasant is going to score a bunch of points," Cochran said. "We’ve got to go back to work defensively. I told the kids to celebrate for the next couple of days, but on Monday morning, it’s business. We’ve got to go there, so I’m expecting a battle.”
Lindale 19, Whitehouse 14
At Eagle Stadium, Lindale
Whitehouse 0 6 8 0 -- 14
Lindale 6 7 0 6 – 19
LIN – Dylan Worrell 23 pass from Dillon Heinaman (two-point failed), 0:12.
LIN – Jordan Jenkins 62 run (Landon Love kick), 6:56.
WHI – Cameron Cantrell 6 pass from Flint Herrington (kick blocked), 1:23.
WHI – Carter Adams 2 run (Cantrell two-point conversion), 0:14.
LIN -- Jenkins 8 run (two-point failed), 9:33.
First Downs 16 11
Total Yards 274 289
Rushes-Yards 31-37 33-146
Passing Yards 237 143
Comp.-Att.-Int. 20-31-2 14-23-0
Punts-Avg. 5-46.0 7-37.0
Fumbles-Lost 3-1 1-1
Penalties-Yards 7-60 3-30
RUSHING—Whitehouse, Carter Adams 18-44, Flint Herrington 11-9, Team 1-(-5), Cooper Clemons 1-(-11). Lindale, Jordan Jenkins 26-128, Dillon Heinaman 7-18.
PASSING—Whitehouse, Herrington 20-31-2--237. Lindale, Heinaman 14-23-0--143.
RECEIVING—Whitehouse, Cameron Cantrell 6-95, Kendrion Johnson 5-69, Cameron Johnson 4-33, Ken'Della Wood 4-31, Carter Adams 1-9. Lindale, Conner Boyette 8-77, Dylan Worrell 2-38, Colton Brown 3-19, Brennan Moore 1-9.