New Berlin West's football team continued to build confidence, but it was Cudahy that came away with a 19-7 victory on Friday in a defensive Woodland Conference battle.
The Vikings (1-3) took a 7-3 lead early in the third quarter when Preston Porter hit Adrian Peil for a 57-yard touchdown strike. But Cudahy rebounded, getting its own long touchdown when Teontae Morgan caught the ball and scored from 23 yards away, and two more fourth-quarter scores put the game out of reach.
"It was the secondary's best game of the season, and really, we're starting to gain confidence defensively, flying to the football," said West coach Aaron Mack. "We're tackling really well and playing with that urgency that we preach to the kids, and they're buying into it. Our defensive coaches are doing a great job getting them ready."
Peil's long touchdown came on a post route.
"In the style of game they chose to play defensively, it was going to be ugly," Mack said. "They blitzed every down, and they're going to get us sometimes. You have to make it hurt hwen you do catch the football, and we had guys open all night long and just didn't connect. It really came down to making plays (on offense). Who's going to make plays when it matters most?"
All of West's positive yardage came through the air, with Porter connecting on 10 of 27 passes for 187 yards. Cudahy held the Vikings to negative-30 yards rushing while compiling 135 passing and 98 rushing yards.
Damian Bartay had two field goals for the Packers, including a 24-yarder that accounted for the only scoring in the first half. Peil finished with three catches for 140 yards.
"The bottom line is this game comes down to the idea that you can't beat yourself," Mack said. "I thought we let one slip away. The way the kids played for four quarters -- we played our butts off. It was physical and we didn't back down. We just didn't make enough plays. I have to do a better job to get our kids ready to play, and we'll come back next week."
West travels to face Blue Division leader Pewaukee next Friday.