With less than a minute remaining Friday night, Westfield assistant coach Jehuu Caulcrick raised his arms heavenward, forming a ''V'' symbol above his head.
The Wolverines didn't have to wonder what that meant.
Sparked by three second-half touchdowns from senior Mike Okerlund, the Wolverines pulled away from Southwestern to score a stunning, 27-0, victory at Charles A. Lawson Field.
With teammate Cameron Wright (4) leading the way, Westfield’s Mike Okerlund finds plenty of running room during Friday’s Class C South football game against Southwestern at Charles A. Lawson Field. See additional photos at cu.post-journal.com.
P-J photo by Scott Kindberg
''Other than sectional titles, this is one of the biggest wins we've ever had (at Westfield),'' Coach Bob North said. ''It's tougher in football, because you have 11 guys who have to do their job every play and tonight, in general, 11 guys did their job on every play. This is a great win for Westfield-Brocton.''
Not only did the Wolverines even their record at 1-1, but they snapped the Trojans' 29-game home winning streak. In fact, Southwestern (1-1) had not lost at Lawson Field since Sept. 14, 2006 when it fell to East Aurora, 23-21, on a field goal in the waning moments.
There was no such drama on a balmy night on Hunt Road.
Okerlund, who rushed for 136 yards on 20 carries, scored on TD bursts of 12 and 31 yards, caught a 12-yard pass from quarterback Dylan MacCubbin, and returned the opening kickoff 88 yards to set up a 1-yard plunge by Dan Ferguson.
As it turned out, the touchdown less than two minutes into the game - it was the only points of the first half - was all Westfield would need.
''They're better than us, they're flat-out better than us,'' Southwestern coach Jay Sirianni said. ''Their kids were tougher, they were better coached and that was the better football team tonight. They took it to us in the second half. ... They could have won that game, 40-0.''
With the offensive line of center Jordan Ellis, tackles David Figley and Bill Nowell, and guards James Heflin and Caleb Genthner dominating up front after intermission, the Wolverines ran the ball at will and sewed up a surprisingly easy victory.
''They said at halftime, 'Coach, we can run this football,' and that's what we did,'' North said. ''We came out and pounded it. ... If you run the football, which has been tough for us to do over the years, that's huge.''
Ironically, it was a pass - from MacCubbin to Okerlund - on fourth-and-goal from the 12 on the Wolverines' first possession of the second half that may have been the biggest play of the game. The extra point attempt was blocked, but Westfield's lead stod at 13-0 with 4:30 remaining in the third quarter. The drive was highlighted by Okerlund's 31-yard run.
With the way the Wolverines' defense was playing, a two-touchdown lead was more than enough.
Westfield picked off three passes - two by Travis Rammelt and one by Okerlund - and Ferguson, a linebacker, had 9 tackles. All told, Southwestern outgained Westfield, 266-222, but the Trojans never could execute in the red zone and their normally reliable kicker, Tanner Hoose, misfired on field goal tries from 37, 30 and 38 yards.
''I know they threw for a lot of yardage (Southwestern quarterback Jake Pilling completed 17-of-36 passes for 155 yards), but we'll give them the little stuff. If it was going to take them that long to score then you're going to get turnovers.''
The Wolverines scored two more touchdowns in the fourth quarter on runs of 12 and 31 yards by Okerlund to put an exclamation point on one of the biggest wins in school history.
''I told the kids in the locker room, 'Look, the only people that believe we're going to win are the guys in here, everyone of us. Everyone out there is probably doubting us. Let's go out there and make a statement,' and we did.''
For the Trojans, it's back to work after suffering its first home loss in six years.
''It's easy when you win and things are going right,'' Sirianni said, ''but your character really shows when you lose, and it did show tonight. We have to re-evaluate where we're at as a team, our heart and character first, and then we'll get to the Xs and Os. Those are easier to correct than not responding to adversity. That's where I'm more disappointed.''
NOTES: MacCubbin completed 9-of-13 passes for 74 yards. ... Jon Coe caught three passes for 36 yards. ... Rammelt had 6 tackles and Cameron Wright added six. ... Figley and Caleb Lawson each had three tackles for loss. ... Pilling led the Trojans with 70 yards on the ground. ... Peter Trathen paced Southwestern's defense with eight tackles and a fumble recovery, and Jesia Hogue had seven tackles, a sack and an interception. ... Caulcrick, the former Clymer Central School and Michigan State University star, has been assisting North since mid-August. ''He just loves it,'' North said. ''He's such a good guy to have around, because the guys just love to listen to him. ... I think the kids wanted to play for him tonight and show what he has taught them they could apply.''
Westfield7 0 6 14 - 27
Southwestern0 0 0 0 - 0
Westfield-Ferguson 1 run (Lawson kick)
Westfield-Okerlund 12 pass from MacCubbin (kick blocked)
Westfield-Okerlund 12 run (Ferguson pass from MacCubbin)
Westfield-Okerlund 31 run (kick fail)