High School Sports

No. 16 Weddington takes down No. 13 Porter Ridge in Sweet 16 showdown

Porter Ridge appeared to be in control of the game early as the Pirates got field goals from senior Jared Wheatley on each of their first two possessions to take a 6-0 lead.

But Weddington (2-0) roared back in the final three minutes of the first half as Warriors’ quarterback Whitner Litton first found senior James Shipley for a 36-yard touchdown pass with 2:57 remaining in the second quarter.

After a quick three-and-out by the Pirates, Litton struck again on the very next play from scrimmage, finding Will Shipley (James’ younger brother) on a 31-yard touchdown pass with 1:10 left in the half to give Weddington a 14-6 lead.

Weddington never looked back, rolling to 28-12 victory.

Litton made big plays all night, going 13 for 25 for 180 yards passing and three touchdowns. Will Shipley rushed for 85 yards and a touchdown and caught four more passes for 51 yards and another score. James Shipley had five catches for 44 yards and a touchdown.

Porter Ridge (2-1) never got in sync on offense as starting quarterback Grayson McCall missed most of the second quarter with injury, while senior running back Jaylen Coleman had only four carries for 30 yards, missing most of the final three quarters with an injury.

McCall led the way for the Pirates with 86 yards passing and 70 yards rushing on the night.

Records: Weddington 2-0; Porter Ridge 2-1.

Three who mattered

Whitner Litton, Weddington quarterback: The senior quarterback was poised all night, going 13 for 25 for 180 yards and three touchdown passes, including scoring throws of 36, 31 and 31.

Will Shipley, Weddington wide receiver/running back: The Warriors’ sophomore made timely big plays, rushing for 85 yards and a touchdown, while catching four passes for 51 yards and another score. His older brother James Shipley also caught a 36-yard touchdown pass.

Jared Wheatley, Porter Ridge kicker: The Pirates’ senior kicker made an impact with 35- and 38-yard field goals and an interception, all in the first quarter.

What’s next

Weddington travels to East Mecklenburg Friday at 7, while Porter Ridge hosts Sun Valley with a 7:30 kickoff.