Western Wayne suffered a lopsided loss to Coughlin in a non-league contest
It's taken nearly a month of the season, but Western Wayne is beginning to show signs of life in its passing game.
Although the Wildcats suffered a lopsided loss Saturday at Coughlin, rookie head coach Donnie McDonough was pleased with what he saw from one of his young quarterbacks.
"Kyle Haines stepped up and did a really nice job for us," he said. "We put him in there after the second series and he definitely took a step forward."
Haines responded by passing for nearly 100 yards and a rushing for a fourth quarter touchdown.
Despite Haines' solid play under center, Western Wayne dropped to 1-2 on the year with a 35-14 loss.
"We're young, we're a little banged up and we're definitely going through some growing pains," said Coach McDonough. "But, we took some positive steps forward and that's what I'm looking for."
The Wildcats are back on the road Friday night for a Division II-III crossover game at Lackawanna Trail.
Opening kick-off is set for 7 p.m. in Factoryville.
Coughlin came out with both barrels blazing in this rare Saturday contest.
The Crusaders deftly mixed the pass and run in building a commanding 21-0 lead at halftime.
Quarterback Tim Pilch threw for 97 yards and one score, but also ran for 106 yards and another TD.
In addition, tailback Paul Cole rumbled for 146 yards, the highlight of which was a 6-yard scoring run midway through the first quarter.
By the time the evening was over, Coughlin had piled up 22 first downs and 355 yards on the ground.
Western Wayne fought back by unleashing Jayson Figueroa on the Crusaders' defense. The Wildcats' senior tailback turned in yet another outstanding effort, carrying the ball 17 times for 142 yards.
Figueroa also caught three passes for 84 yards and returned a punt 49 yards for a touchdown.
"It's not a secret that we are leaning pretty heavily on Jayson," said Coach McDonough. "He's an excellent athlete and a very good football player. I'm really pleased with how Jayson is doing right now."
Haines accounted for Western Wayne's final TD, slicing up the middle from 16 yards out on a perfectly-executed quarterback draw.
"Kyle is an athletic kid who can hurt you with his arm and his legs," Coach McDonough said. "He's getting better every day."
In addition to Haines and Figueroa, Western Wayne's young skipper singled out two more players for special mention.
Scotty Walck has quickly carved out a niche for himself at the varsity level this season. Just a freshman, Walck found himself in the starting line-up on offense, defense and special teams against Coughlin.
Even more impressively, Walck re-habbed a nasty high ankle sprain all week in order to get in there and play Saturday.
"Every day since Monday Scotty was telling me he'd be ready to go," Coach McDonough said. "He wasn't kidding. Scotty is a tough, tough kid."
In addition to lining up at safety and wide receiver, Walck has also nailed down the long-snapper's job for kicks and punts.
"I don't know if there's a team in this league Scotty wouldn't be starting for," said Coach McDonough. "For a freshman especially, he's a very good player."
Dakota Swoyer is another youngster turning heads each and every week.
A sophomore listed at 5' 10" and 190 lbs in Western Wayne's Media Guide, Swoyer has been pressed into service at both middle linebacker and on the offensive line.
"We lost both our centers to injury, so we asked Dakota to step in there and he did a great job," Coach McDonough said.
"He made a couple of youthful mistakes, but he never quit and that's the most important thing."
Score by Quarters...
WW (1-2) 0 0 7 7 - 14
WBC (3-0) 14 7 7 7 - 35