SPARTA – To say the Whitehall Vikings offense was clicking on Friday night may be an understatement.
The Vikings racked up 500 yards of total offense, including 383 yards rushing on Friday evening, en route to a 40-20 opening-round playoff win over host Sparta.
The 1-2 combination of quarterback Kyle Stratton and running back Alec Pruett were too much for Sparta to overcome. Stratton gained a team leading 177 yards on 21 carries and scored two touchdowns, while Pruett rushed for 103 yards on 15 carries and one touchdown.
“Our kids played a really good game tonight,” Whitehall coach Tony Sigmon said. “It was a total team effort. Kyle (Stratton) did a great job of running the offense and Alec got over 100 yards.
“Even though we only passed for 117 yards, I thought it was effective, considering the field and weather conditions,” Sigmon said. “I was really happy with the passing game.”
The Viking quarterback completed 7-of-11 passes for 117 yards and two touchdowns.
Sparta jumped out to a first-quarter lead, scoring on their first offensive possession to take a 7-0 lead.
It was a short-lived lead, as the Vikings’ cashed in with 2:05 remaining on a 28-yard run by Stratton. The game was tied after one quarter.
Whitehall turned up the pressure and scored 20 points in the second quarter.
The Vikings scored on a 31-yard pass play from Stratton to Brodie Fogus, Nate Bolley scored on a 38-yard run and Pruett scored from 3 yards out in the decisive quarter.
Whitehall owned a 27-13 halftime lead.
The Whitehall defense shut down the Sparta offense in the third quarter. Meanwhile, Stratton scored his second touchdown of the evening on a 3-yard run. Whitehall led 33-13 entering the final quarter.
Each team found the endzone in the fourth quarter. Stratton’s 32-yard pass to Bolley capped the scoring for Whitehall.
The Whitehall defense was led by Max Brown with 6 1/2 tackles. He was followed by Bolley with 5 ½ and Brodie Fogus with five, plus an interception.
Sparta did manage to rush for 220 yards, but the Whitehall defense limited the passing to just 41 yards.
Whitehall (8-2) will travel north to take on the Cadillac Vikings (8-2) next weekend. Cadillac defeated Fruitport 42-35 on Friday evening. The date and time of that game will be released next week.