There are days when nothing goes as planned, making everything difficult. And when a team has only one game a week to prove its worth, it has to be sure that no matter what happens on that one day, it is able to find a victory.
That’s what Windsor did on Friday night in a game that was uglier than a logjam on I-25.
Things turned sour before the ball was even kicked against Palmer Ridge. The Wizards bus got lost, preventing Chris Jones’ team from going through its normal walkthrough and warm-up routine.
And things didn’t get much better once the game started. The first half was a completely disjointed affair with flags being thrown on what seemed like every play. But through the mess, Windsor used one big minute late in the half to seize momentum.
Quarterback Joe Sanger put Windsor on the board first with a four-yard run to make it 7-0 with 1:06 left in the half. After a defensive stop the Wizards got the ball at their own 26 with about 35 seconds left.
Windsor ran a safe handoff to Jordan Porterfield. The thing with Porterfield, though, is that he can take a play up the middle, break a tackle and go the distance. He did just that and 74 yards later it was 14-0 Windsor.
Fittingly for how the rest of the game went, the biggest play wasn’t a spectacular run, but a special teams play. Palmer Ridge (0-3) scored two touchdowns in the second half, the second coming with 8:48 remaining.
But instead of an even score, Brandon King surged through to block what would have been a game-tying extra point.
“We had a good push from the line, we were pressuring that kick,” King said. “I just jumped up, he kicked it a little low.”
After the block the Windsor defense made a big stop with a Sean Glenn sack. The Wizards than sealed the victory with a clock-milking drive that ended with another Sanger touchdown run, the score ended 21-13.
“We know it could have been a heck of a lot better,” Jones said. “The execution wasn’t good, the discipline with the flags obviously has to be cleaned up.”
In the end, it was a successful trip on the road for Windsor (2-1), no matter how ugly it was. Since half the teams in the state win on Friday’s and half lose, the Wizards came up on the right side.
“The bottom line though, we finished in the top-50 percent in the state,” Jones said.
Follow reporter Kevin Lytle