Upon the sequel to the most intense week of high school ball, we were given another handful of exciting games. It is obvious several teams have packed up camp dropping games which shouldn’t be dropped. Unsurprisingly, the best teams in the state have showed zero let up. Some fantastic games were played, some hopes kept alive, and some seasons destined to be finished this upcoming week.
Here’s our take:
Gulp – The measuring stick for Martinsburg has not been in full perspective. Out-of-state wins, questionable panhandle wins- so their matchup against top tier Musselman should give us a good idea? It was 49-0 at halftime. QB Tyson Bagent went 16 for 19 for 312 yards in the first half. It would seem as if the hype is real… very real. The same occurred in Bluefield where Mookie Collier finished their 10-0 season with 217 yards on 13 carries with a 41-6 thump of top AA James Monroe. Finally, East Hardy manhandled a scary South Harrison team who lost both Freddy Canary and Cam Barnett (length not sure) and 110 yards receiving by Brett Tharp.
Shootout of the Week – North Marion and Robert C. Byrd are both sitting on the edge and needed a big win Friday. 1,261 total yards. 116 points. North Marion’s Dalton Malcolmb showed up ready to go scoring quick and having 295 yards passing at the half with plenty of yardage on the ground. North Marion looked solid in the second half, up 46-38- however, the Eagles were only getting started. The Huskies turned over five straight possessions which Byrd capitalized on. They’d finish 68-46 with two backs over 200 yards. Malcolmb finished with over 400 and WR Kenneth Stahl had over 250 receiving. This positions RCB well.
Hopes Tarnished – Several teams had a chance to keep their postseason hopes alive. Some succeeded, most didn’t. Chapmanville had to host the beasts of AA and defeat them. Jeremy Dillon had completely different plans: gaining over 350 yards of offense and seven touchdowns in the 60-22 win. Oak Hill needed to defeat powerful Midland Trail to still have a shot, but the Ferris runners were too much behind a fantastic O-Line. Oak Hill dropped to 5-4 on the loss. Ravenswood, now 5-4, did their best to combat Single A phenom Jaiden Smith but fell 20-10. Their last hope remains in defeating AAA Ripley in Week 11.
Rivalry Domination Awards – The much anticipated MoHawk Ball was destined for excellence with Morgantown facing possible elimination. University, looking for a perfect regular season, didn’t care. Though starting slow, QB Clay Bailey systematically put together a fantastic games passing for 245 and a score- complimented by Robert Sanders with 95 on the ground. Morgantown attempted a late rally but to no avail; they finish 4-6 losing 38-19. Down south, Cabell Midland and Spring Valley combined scored a touchdown on the first seven possessions. However, after some special teams miscues and big plays, Spring Valley stretched the lead to double digits. They would hold it behind a team effort from usual stars: Malashevich, Porter, Cassidy, and Johnson. An impressive showing- 56-28.
Your Weekly MSAC Drama – Hurricane and George Washington had switched roles the last several weeks. Hurricane riding hot, went cold against Parkesburg and Capital while George Washington won four in a row. The two hit full force and played amazing first half defense. 3-3 at the half, the game was busted open by Curon Cordon then by Grant Wells. Then, it was back to defensive business. 10-10, the game went to overtime, where Hurricane positioned itself for a go ahead score and win. RB Christian Hill broke two tackles to get in giving Hurricane a much needed win. In Parkersburg, Kaden Easterling and Tyler Moler went toe-to-toe running the ball only for big defensive plays such as an 82-yard scoop and score by Brenton Strange to keep flipping the game in the Big Reds’ favor. Parkersburg continued their impressive streak, pulling through 44-30 to go 6-3 (Warriors now 4-6). In Charleston, the Cougars mauled South Charleston 55-6, however, the Black Eagles (3-6) playoff hopes are not necessarily over.
AA Domination Award – Braxton County continues improving week in and week out. In a should-be blowout against East Fairmont, they delivered. Tayton Stout caught, threw, and ran for plenty of yards and touchdowns in a 48-7 win. Winfield, who continues to roll, dominated a promising Scott team 66-13 with a combined seven touchdowns between Zack Bratton and Andrew Huff. Wayne also used a QB and RB duo, Jeremiah Milum and Michael Bartrum, to destroy Logan with 360 yards alone in the first half (score finished 54-14). At Point Pleasant’s senior night, Cason Payne faced off against a solid Westside team and finished the night with several school records (season and career) with the Black Knights ending their regular season with a 75-14 pushover.
Single A Upsets – Was Fayetteville losing to previously 0-8 Greenbrier West not shocking enough? Well, Notre Dame handed Clay-Battelle a very unexpected loss. What was a close game was put completely on ice by QB Ryan LaAsmar who delivered a long pass TD then had a pick six to seal the win 34-20. In Weirton, the much hyped Madonna squad was blasted by Wheeling Central. One of the state’s top rushing leaders, Donovan Kirby, was held to 91 yards while Central’s Dawson Wear piled over 200 and several scores in a abrupt 50-0 thrashing of a one-loss program. Single A could get very interesting.
Close Calls – Wheeling Park was trying to slide by Parkersburg South in what was expected to be a stretch win. It looked that way early 14-0, however, South had a two touchdown surge in the second quarter bringing it all back. Back to back drives in the fourth, scored by Donnie Evans and Nick Yoho tied it again at 21. Big plays on defense and a long drive put the game away late for Park, 35-21. A late South touchdown seemed scary. Wheeling Park avoided a big time relapse. Liberty (Harrison) was also looking uneasy against one win Lewis County before pulling away late.
Big Time Wins – Philip Barbour was not favored to beat Lincoln but definitely needed to. Kobie Carpenter came out launching but the Cougar offense was highly inefficient- turning the ball over five times. The Colts capitalized and Chase Collier ran rampant. The score slowly went up quarter by quarter. Hunter Mason had a heck of a game on defense slowing down the electric Cougar offense. It was enough to win 27-6. Also, the unexpected winner in a decision game was Richwood over Summers County. In a 28-14 surprising win, Jeremiah Johnston may have just clinched a playoff birth for his team.
Back It Up Awards – This is mainly for Single A. Several schools impressed consistently in week ten. Cameron thumped a should-be Bridgeport (OH) team 52-6 behind big plays of Colby Brown. Webster County is also closing in on a 9-1 record with a solid handling of Montcalm. Tug Valley had a closer call with Man than expected but still look great heading into the postseason. Finally, Tyler Consolidated demolished what was 5-3 Valley (Wetzel) 51-8 and look to holster a late seed into the dance.