Morgantown used 10 different backs to run the football as it built a 38-7 lead en route to a 44-20 win over Mussleman. MHS running back Chazzy Thomas came out of last week’s game after handling the football just three times. Thomas suffered a sprained right ankle.
“We’ve been trying to groom a backup all year long,” said Morgantown coach John Bowers. “Chazzy does carry the ball a lot and he takes a pounding. Next guy up.
“It could be a multitude of kids like it was last week,” Bowers continued. “Whomever it is just needs to get behind that line and run the ball hard.”
Shea Campbell had the most carries and the most yards as he rushed for 99-yards on 17 attempts in last week’s game.
“Shea did a nice job,” Bowers said. “He’s a tough kid. Some other guys did well. DaShon Thomas and Daniel McAllister ran the ball the hardest of any of the backups. They hit the holes hard.”
Thomas, who leads the state with 2,010 yards and 30 touchdowns, may miss this week’s game. He is expected to be back for the MoHawk Bowl next week. Last year, Thomas suffered a serious leg and ankle injury in the UHS game that caused him to miss the playoffs.
Morgantown is finished the home portion of its regular season schedule, although the week 10 game vs. University High is right across town. This week, it’s a trip to John Marshall.
“Back to the Valley,” said Bowers. “That’s where I’m from. I love that place.”
John Marshall played at University last week, losing its third straight game. The Monarchs are 0-2 in Two Rivers Athletic Conference play.
University (7-1) at Preston (3-4)
The Hawks won their fourth straight as they improved to 3-1 in the TRAC with a 38-9 win over John Marshall last week. Jack Armstrong scored his fourth special teams touchdown of the season as he brought a first half punt back 92-yards for a score. Armstrong had another punt return of 50-yards where he was stopped at the John Marshall one yard line.
“Jack with a highlight film,” said UHS coach John Kelley. “I thought our special teams units were magnificent all the way around. It’s good to have solid special teams that you can rely on game in and game out.”
2012 all-state kicker Billy Kinney has returned to the lineup for the Hawks. Kinney got off a 50-yard boomer that was downed inside the five on his first punt attempt of the season. Kinney, who suffered an injured foot during the summer, will be able to punt for now. He still is not able to kickoff or place kick.
“That was probably the highlight of the night,” Kelley said of Kinney’s high arcing punt. “It was senior night and the crowd went crazy. He’s been through so much to be able to come back at do that.”
The Hawks will continue with a rebuilt offensive line as three starters missed the John Marshall game. Guard/linebacker Nick Fisher is out for the season with a knee injury. The Hawks are hoping to get linemen Jeff Headley and Nick Lambert back, if not this week, then for the MoHawk Bowl next week.
Preston has averaged 46 points per game in its last four outings, winning three of the four. Last week, Josiah Nuse rushed for 205 yards and five touchdowns. Nuse had an additional 92 yards in pass receptions as the Knights downed East Fairmont 56-39.
Bridgeport (6-1) at Liberty (0-6-1)
Bridgeport took strides in making up for two losses at the hands of Keyser last year by beating the Golden Tornado 41-0 last time out in Bridgeport. It was thorough domination as Bridgeport out-gained Keyser 501-211.
The Indians did not turn the ball over and they committed just one penalty. A big difference for Bridgeport this season against Keyser was the presence of senior running back Anthony Bonamico. Bonamico missed the regular season game between the two teams last year and he played defense only in the playoff game.
Bonamico has rushed for 517 yards in back-to-back wins over Fairmont Senior and Keyser. He has 1,145 yards and 15 touchdowns while averaging 11.1 yards per carry on the season.
Liberty has had offensive troubles all season long. The Mountaineers are coming off a 14-14 overtime tie against Grafton. The Mountaineers have scored 14 points or loss in six consecutive games.
Buckhannon-Upshur (2-5) at Fairmont Senior (5-2)
Fairmont Senior snapped a two game losing streak as it beat Braxton County in the first of four consecutive games to be played at East/West Stadium to close out the regular season.
Fairmont Senior hopes to clean up a penalty situation as several potential scores were nullified last week as the team was flagged 16 times for 135 yards. The Fairmont Senior defense, however, was dominant as the Polar Bears held Braxton to negative rushing yards and to just 25 total yards.
Buckhannon out-gained Philip Barbour 201-63 through the air and 331-226 overall, but the Colts rallied from a 10 point second half deficit to win the game. Buckhannon has now dropped four in a row as it plays its second consecutive road game.
Elkins (0-7) at Lewis County (5-2)
It was too much Jalen Jones for Lewis County last week in a loss at Oak Hill. The defeat snapped a five game winning streak for the Minutemen. Jones scored all four touchdowns in the game for Oak Hill in the 27-17 victory.
Jones had a brilliant punt return to set up the first score of the game for Oak Hill. The Minutemen played a fairly clean game last week with no turnovers and just two penalties. The Minutemen hope to get some momentum for the playoffs as they host winless teams back to back — Elkins this week and Liberty next week.
Elkins is the midst of a tough stretch as it is trying to get its first win of the season. The Tigers are in the midst of a stretch of six straight games against teams that will likely qualify for the playoffs.
Elkins has faced Fairmont Senior, Philip Barbour and Wheeling Park in consecutive weeks. Those teams have combined to go 17-5 so far. The game this week at Lewis County will be followed by followed by trips to Bridgeport and Robert C. Byrd. Those teams are a combined 16-6.
South Harrison (2-5) St. Marys (7-0)
South Harrison is the midst of a tough stretch of three consecutive road games. The opponents (Parkersburg Catholic, Tyler Consolidated and St. Marys) have a combined record of 16-6.
The Hawks expect to have quarterback Ian Riggleman back in the lineup this week after Riggleman missed the game at Tyler last week due to illness. Sophomore Christian Marin filled in as South rushed for 240 yards, but the Hawks fumbled five times, losing two.
St. Marys is unbeaten and ranked No. 1, but the Blue Devils have had a couple of close calls. Most recently, an 11-9 home turf win over Magnolia. Earlier this year, St. Marys edged Wirt County on the road, 7-6.
Philip Barbour (6-2) at Notre Dame (5-2)
Al Johnson scored three touchdowns as Philip Barbour rallied from 10 points down to beat Buckhannon last week. It was the third straight win and the fifth win in six games for the surging Colts. Philip Barbour will close the regular season with road games at Notre Dame and at East Fairmont.
Madonna’s massive offensive line was too much for Notre Dame as the top ranked Blue Dons scored 41 unanswered points to win easily last week. The Irish have a very difficult schedule down the stretch as they’ll face a likely Class AA playoff team this week and then back to back Class A playoff teams in Clay Battelle and Tucker County.
Philip Barbour has won three in a row in this series with Notre Dame.
Lincoln (5-2) at North Marion (1-7)
Lincoln has reversed its fortunes from a 2-8 season a year ago. The Cougars are trying to secure their second playoff birth in the last three years and just their third post season spot since 2004.
North Marion needs to get the offense going as the team has scored just one touchdown over the course of the last two games — losses to Lewis County and Robert C, Byrd.
North Marion won the game over Lincoln at home 21-0 last year in the first meeting between the two schools.
Van (3-4) at Clay Battelle (6-0)
The Cee Bees will close out a nine game regular season schedule with three consecutive home games. Clay Battelle broke open a close game in the second quarter with Cameron with a couple of big plays. Jarret Hockenberry had a 66-yard touchdown run and Tanner Bragg had a 59-yard scoring reception. The Cee-Bees scored scored four times in that quarter to take control.
Van doesn’t have a victory over a team with a winning record this year. But the Bulldogs have shown the ability to score points of late as they’ve averaged 35 points over their last three games.
East Fairmont (1-6) at Grafton (0-6-1)
The Bees came close to getting their first win since August last week as they had leads of 13-0 and 25-22 at home against Preston. The Knights would rally in the second half for the win. East Fairmont try to find a way to shore things up on defense as it has allowed an average of 47 points per game over the course of the last four contests.
Grafton got fourth quarter touchdown from Nate Moses and a two point conversion run by Moses to force overtime at home against Liberty last week. But neither team could score in the three overtimes, leading to the tie.