WHEELING, W.Va. — No. 1 Madonna completed its perfect season and captured the state championship it fell short of a season ago, beating No. 7 Greenbrier West 24-14 on Saturday night in frigid temperatures at Wheeling Island Stadium.

The perfect 14-0 campaign for the Blue Dons was sparked a season ago on the same field when Madonna suffered a heartbreaking defeat by one point in overtime to Wahama.

“Right now, I kind of forgot what last year was all about,” Madonna head coach Doug Taylor said. “These kids fought back through a tough year and got back here. It means a lot to them and it means a lot to me that they were able to achieve this.

The normally quick-scoring Madonna offense was held to just a 7-0 lead at the break as Greenbrier West’s stingy six-man front limited that outpouring early.

The play of the entire Super Six, though, came late in the first quarter when it appeared the Cavaliers had Madonna quarterback Ross Comis stopped in the backfield for a sack.

Instead, as the senior Blue Don was being dragged to the ground, he flipped the ball over his shoulder/behind his back to a waiting Eliott Nero who then scampered 19 yards into the red-zone.

“Eliott is always in the back of my head – I can always see him somewhere,” Comis said. “I was getting tackled and saw him right at the last second. I just flipped it to him and he did the rest.”

That play kept the Madonna drive alive and eventually led to a one yard touchdown run by Comis to put the Blue Dons up 7-0.

“I’ve been a coach for 13-14 years now, and what that boy has done in the last three years, nothing surprises me,” Taylor said of Comis. “He’s makes plays out of nothing, buys time to get his receivers open. He’s a great athlete and a very deserving kid.”

Nero, meanwhile, had 15 yards on the ground and 33 receiving yards for Madonna in the win.

Comis, the game’s MVP, finished with 129 yards on the ground and a score. He also was 5-of-7 through the air for 123 yards and two more touchdowns – one of those was a 43 yard bomb to Will Bowser.

“Will has been my go-to guy all year and he gets open,” Comis said. “He makes big plays and is an awesome guy.”

Comis connected with Bowser for another 34-yard touchdown catch in the third quarter, which gave the Blue Dons a 21-7 cushion.

Ben Queen/MetroNews photo

Madonna quarterback Ross Comis finished with over 250 offensive yards and three touchdowns.

West, though, didn’t go away without a fight, responding to that score with a 12 play, 58 yard drive in just over five minutes that tightened things up at 21-14 with 10:03 left in the contest – that drive was capped off with a one yard touchdown run from quarterback Malik Boatwright.

The Cavaliers scored their first touchdown on the first possession of the third to tie things up at seven apiece – a two yard run by Cory Cox put the points on the board.

“I’m proud of them,” said Greenbrier West coach Lewis McClung. “We had a great year, had some big wins to get here. It was a tough loss, though. I thought our kids played hard and had some opportunities to capitalize on.”

Boatwright finished with 38 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries in the loss. Cox had 47 yards on nine carries.

Both teams were plagued by penalties – Madonna had eight for 88 yards, while West had 11 penalties for 116 yards.

A Matthew Green 22 yard field goal with 6:12 to go put the final touch on the scoring, giving the Blue Dons a comfortable 10 point lead, 24-14.

“That loss a year ago fueled the fire for us,” Nero said. “Every single person bought into it, came to offseason lifting, offseason running and we got back here.”

It’s Madonna’s third football state championship and first since 2009.

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Comments

  • Mountain free

    I have never met a high school coach that would not take a kid from outside of his school district. The problem is we have rural class a school with defined school districts playing urban A schools with undefined school districts that are on state borders. This is never going to be an even playing field. Every urban class a school with out defined school districts would play AA. It has nothing to do with private versus public.

    • no excuses

      The wvssac doesn't have a problem with it.

      • Mountain free

        The WVSSAC has a problem with it. But they can't win a law suit. They should stand up for what is right and take their lumps in the law suit.

        • wirerowe

          When you get beyond the parents on both sides. both teams played well. While there were a lot of penalties on both sides I don"t recall a turnover. The Madonna quarterback was very good and the Greenbrier West quarterback even though he was small and didn't have overwhelming statistics was a player on all sides of the ball. no excuses you would be singing the same song as the Greenbrier West fans if your kids went to that school. Count on it.

        • Say What?

          I honestly believe the lawsuit(which I heard was threatened years ago) would come from some affluent Wheeling Central alumni. Only a rumor since it never came to fruition.

        • Say What?

          Mountain free, are you going to help defer their legal fees? I think not.

    • WVU86

      Mountain free - every WVSSAC member does have a defined school district, including the private schools. Any student can attend any high school outside his/her district and play sports right away providing that student enrolls in the out-of-district school upon entering 9th grade. Yet, I understand what you are saying, urban schools have a greater population to draw kids from compared to the rural schools.

  • WV Bud

    I am a Yellow Jacket fan but ask East Hardy and Viking fans about recruiting.Fiddler wouldn"t have done that now would he?My point is that anyone would and does.

    • JacketsGirl2001

      The problem with Moorefield now is they have no leadership. The weight room is no longer a mandatory thing. If you want to win championships again you have to have football and the sacrifices of it in your heart. People may believe in the small the community that Moorefield Football is coming back, but it's not.

  • WV Bud

    Well Say What, my commet is I would sure like to see him come back and get MHS back to the top.

    • Say What?

      Well, WV Bud, would he recruit kids from East Hardy and Petersburg again?

  • wow

    Private schools don't need to recruit. I for one would send my kid to a private school to play sports if I could. The main reason is a better education. If a player has D-1 skills, a private school will prepare them on the educational side of things much better than a public school, in turn their test scores will be better and they will be able to get into better schools. As you know most of these kids will never go past college in sports, so the education is the prize. I don't hold it against the people who have a private school and the money to send their kids to it. lots of bitter haters on here.

    • wvrefugee

      You sir have an uneducated viewpoint. Must be a Marshall grad!

      • Wow

        I didn't say some of the private schools don't recruit, i said they don't need to. You sir need to learn to read. You have to be out of your mind if you think parents don't try to get their kids into private schools without being recruited. Now of course the private schools don't turn them down, why would they. Some people can get their kids into private schools and some can not, to hate on the one's that can is uneducated sir. Haters will hate.

    • FAN

      THEY DON'T NEED TO RECRUIT?????? LOL ARE YOU SERIOUS LOL DO YOU THINK JOSH MARTIN IS FROM MADONNA?????????YOU GUYS REALLY CRACK ME UP EVERYONE KNOWS YOU AND WHEELING CENTRAL RECRUIT GUYS FROM OTHER PLACES PUBLIC DON'T RECRUIT ITS HOME GUYS FOR US...I DON'T WANT TO HEAR HOW THEY DON'T RECRUIT LOL I BET YOU ANYTHING I CAN DO A SEARCH ON THE INTERNET AND SEE ALL THE GUYS WHERE THEY ARE FROM LOL

      • al

        Josh martin went to grade school-St. Paul's in weirton then on to Madonna. So fan you are wrong

      • Dave

        Get over it man. I'm from mineral county,but they do recruit get over it

      • Wow

        I don't care where he is from, if his parents paid for him to go i'm fine with it. Now if he is from out of the area and did not have to pay to go to school there, thats not O.K. I do not know the answer to that so I'm not going to guess at it. They may have an advantage but for the most part it is paid for. Maybe private schools playing in AA would be better but that is not the rules at this time.

      • Wow

        Dude, you are still yelling, LOL.

      • Say What?

        Hey Fan, shut yer pie hole and do your research! Or maybe you already did and found out that you were wrong again.

  • Private schoolsneed a chnce too

    I'm just glad to see a private school in the state finals. It's been a few years. LOl
    Since 2000, a private schoo has been in the state finals every year but one. 2003

    • Say What?

      And your point is? Moorefield had a nice run in the single A title game in the 90's, winning , I believe, 4. Any comment on Fiddler's teams?

  • Joe

    The bulk of you posters are incredible. These are kids. Quit living through them. Let me guess, most of you were on your high school teams, but didn,t actually play. Of course, you'll say you were all-sectional or all state.

    Pathetic. Grow up and get a life. Perhaps it's time to concern yourselves with how to pay for your kids college tuition and retirement planning. Also, quit wearing those old high school football jackets. Nobody cares.

    • Say What?

      You mean You don't care. Right? They paid the same admission as you, bud.

  • Jimbo

    Recruiting ...... give me a break.

    Boatwright lives with a coach and his mom lives in NY.

    Celebrate a good year and quit whining about recruiting garbage. Your kids deserve better.

    • Francis

      Who wouldn't move the Earth and Moon to land a 5'5, 140 QB?

      Nice try.

    • Wow

      Hey Fan, you are still yelling.

  • I'm honest at least

    Greenbrier (spell check) lol at least they can be proud of the fact of playing fair.

    • NANCY

      PLAYING FAIR???GO WATCH THAT FILM AGAIN YOUR SEE SOME LAID HITS FROM JOSH MARTIN AS WELL LOL

  • I'm honest at least

    Congrats to greenbriere

  • west should have won

    west is state champs in my book we don't go and recruit other players like you catholic school does lol let me say this don't act like you guys don't know what i'am talking about lol .....because you blue dons knows that the kids you got at that school are from other counties or other states that the school has brought families in and ask them to play for them......its sad how you guys recruit plain and simple nice job west should have won anyways to many mistakes that beat our selves not Madonna .. but i can say this west knock the crap out of madonna tonight thats for sure..............

    • Blue Dons

      Oh shut up you lost get over it!! Your enrollment is 4x the size of Madonna and these kids have been playing together since the 5th grade and been together since pre-K at st joes and St. Paul's... Anyone that says Ross is recruited is dumb... He's gone to st joes since pre-K to 8th and then madonna 9th-12th and both of his siblings AND his parents graduated from there so there's that and I think West is the ones hurting getting virtually no yards againsts the Best D in the state And class act by your coach tonight telling the team they will never win again and cheat... Have fun with your state runner up down in hickland

      • The refs screwed West over

        You're the one that needs to shut up, the refs screwed us over many times in this game and you know it, but to be fair the refs aren't entirely at fault for west losing the game (our coaches need to bear some of the blame as well for stupid decisions especially when the coach for west decided to kick a field goal when we was 5 fricken ft from the goal), the refs however had a clear bias against west, for example every time Madonna did any personal fouls the refs didn't throw the yellow flag until 10 seconds after the foul occurred or nt at all, however when west did personal fouls the refs threw the yellow flag almost immediately, this bias was especially apparent in the final qtr when the gave west 5 personal fouls in a row, quite frankly there needs to be a requirement where there's an equal amount of refs from both areas present so neither team can get any special treatment like you guys did, and the people in charge of the WV High School Football program need to investigate this game and see for themselves how biased the refs really were in this game, also I wouldn't be calling us hicks if I were you considering you guys are also West Virginians which by definition means you're hicks just like us.

        • Blue Dons

          Refs made bad calls both ways but when your star player Boatwright had 38 yards on 25 carries madonna had a good game so just admit it madonna was the better team we could stop you but you couldn't stop up!! Now go back to your other excuse about how we should have to play AA with an enrollment of 150 kids and the biggest team we've had in years at 35...

          • BLUE DON REALLY

            WHAT DID NERO DO??????EXCEPT GET HIS AS HIT HARD FROM BOATWRIGHT.....THE ONLY OFFENSE YOU GUYS HAD WAS COMIS LOL HES THE ONLY OFFENSE YOU REALLY HAD...

          • Francis

            Any of those 150 kids in special ed classes? Any of those kids LD or BD? Any of those 150 kids profoundly disabled?

            Doubtful. Not the school's fault. Most private schools aren't equipped to take them. Public schools must take them. And all of them count toward enrollment.

          • The refs screwed West over

            Yes the refs made bad calls both ways, but they made twice as many bad calls against west than they did for madonna, and I'm willing to bet that if the refs wouldn't have played favorites (which they clearly did and I still believe the WVSSAC needs to investigate) the game would have been much closer than what it was, would west have won for sure, I wouldn't go that far, but the game would have almost certainly went into overtime at the least, which would have been better than the refs screwing us over like they did.

        • no excuses

          No, Madonna's complete team play screwed West over, not the refs.

        • cb

          We teach our kids that if things dont go our way in life it is obviously someone else s fault?

          We cant win all of our challenges in life, sometimes we lose. We can be great at what we do for our career, athletics or social life and still run into someone that is better.

          It is okay,and it should provide motivation for next year.

        • RJ

          Quit crying what goes around comes around if West got screwed by the refs. They get to the finals with a lot of help from the refs in the semis against Magnolia

          • RJ THE CRY BABY

            RJ YOU ARE A CRY BABY GO BACK HOME TO YOUR MO0M AND GET YOU SOME MILK OK

          • RJ THE CRY BABY

            RJ YOU ARE A CRY BABY GO BACK HOME TO YOUR MOM AND GET YOU SOME MILK OK. WEST DID NOT HAVE HELP TO BEAT MAGNOLIA IF YOU WATCH THAT GAME HICK BOY .YOU WOULD SEE THAT WEST HAD A TOUCHDOWN NEVER CALLED LOL .SO LITTLE RJ GO BE WITH YOUR MOMMY OK

      • I'm honest at least

        Public schools deserve the chance to play public schools. If parents make the choice and say public education isn't good enough then play your own kind of school at your own cost.

        • no excuses

          Play some private schools during the regular season. It will make a you a better team. If you look for the easy way out, you will never make it in the playoffs.

      • Steve

        We take a loss just like we do a win, with pride and dignity, after your remarks I can see that you know nothing about either. I am ver proud of our team and what they have accomplished! And as for being hicks, I will take our people and our way of life over living around jerks like you!!

        • al

          Steve you peple are poor losers Hail Madonna State Champions

          • I'm honest at least

            On paper state champs......in the eyes of most Madonna should not have been on the field with public schools.

          • Steve

            Al, making such a comment really shows your ignorance, my comment said we win or lose the same way, we do not call names we leave that to the people who display poor sportsman ship, just as you just displayed and who ever the jerk is who called us hicks!

      • FAN

        REALLY BLUE DONS LOL YOU GUYS RECRUIT WEST DON'T BIG BIG DIFFRENCE....BUT WEST SHOULD HAVE WON ....DID NERO DO ANYTHING?????NOPE BECAUSE BOATWRIGHT KNOCK HIS BUTT OUT .........IT WASN'T A DIRTY PLAY NEITHER JUST A HARD HIT FROM BOATWRIGHT....WEST HAD PLENTY OF CHANCES TO WIN THAT GAME BUT WITH THE REFS HELP OF COURSE AND SOME BAD CALLS THAT WEST BEAT THEMSELVES SO........

        • Wow

          Hey Fan, did you know your cap locks is on. Stop yelling, LOL.

    • no excuses

      What game were you watching. Boatwright, 38 yds. on 25 carries. That's an average of a little over 1 yd. per carry. Cox had 47 yds. on 9 carries. Yea, that's really knocking the crap out of Madonna.

      • west should have won

        really i wonder why you cowards would never kick it to boatwright?????????please tell me?????? you knew if you did he would run it back fopr a touchdown lol you know iam right no excuse lol you guys was so scared of his speed that you guys never kicked it to him lol.....

        • Macgyver

          That's called the game of football. .....great coaching

        • Wow

          Why do you west fans laugh so much, lol this lol that. Why would you kick to a teams best return man? You would have to be stupid to do that.

      • FAN

        LOL OH YES WEST DID KNOCK MADONNA OUT NERO LOL

        • Macgyver

          Did Madonna really need Nero? I don't think so. Good thing for West or Madonna may have tacked on another score or two

        • wow

          yelling???

  • west should have won

    pretty bad that Madonna recruit players from Ohio and other places lol it takes away public schools chances to win a title and these boys from Madonna are not from Madonna lol do you think josh martin is from Madonna ????????lol but if you look at the game west beat them selves and bad ref calls that give Madonna the game.......west hit them so hard that night iam sure they will feel it the next day........but west had the chance to win this game and they did not.but ike i said its not fair win Madonna goes and recruits boys from other places.. don't sit there and act like they don't lol because you know damn well they do /. its all about the money you catholics give the school money...hey i wonder why you catholics schools wont get in double AA or triple AAA because you know you cant win that lol right lol

    • Phil

      Do you know that lol means "laugh out loud?" Your placement did not make sense. It was very difficult (hard, sorry I used a big word) to figure out what you were saying without any type of punctuation. By that I mean (. , ! ?), anyway, good job all six teams in the championship this year.

    • Madonna fan

      Josh Martin is from Madonna lives in Hancock county all his life. Baptized at St. Paul's as a baby. So get your facts right two from PA on the team that went through Madonna feeder schools all their life and no one from Ohio on team

    • no excuses

      West had to get out of AA (couldn't compete). Now being, possibly the biggest A school, can't beat one of the smallest schools.

      • Steve

        We would rather be in AA that is not our decision that belongs to the SSAC, the same group that allows the private schools to compete in A.

    • 4stormy

      This recruiting LIE has to stop. These kids have been together since kindergarten and have been playing together since fifth grade. Martin,Bowser er, Brown, Biondillio, all went to St Paul with my son. Nero's mom still teaches there. the same BS went around when my son played on the last championship team. Its a lie and is disrespectful to the Madonna family. Congrats to Greenbrier on a great year

    • Say What?

      Hey, west should have won, are you that ignorant to think a school has the option of playing in a particular class of any given sport? This would be the perfect opportunity to inject a 'ROFL'. So here goes. ROFL !

  • private

    These private schools should have to play in a division of their own, or at least play up a level... Just isn't right

    • west should have won

      iagree its not fair ,.....i wonder why they wont get in single AA or triple AAA lol they know they got no chance but they know they can always win in single A lol but if you was at the game west should have won but they did not it was way way way closer tha the score was 24 14 it should have been west 14 to 7 ball game....you guys are so crybabies from Madonna because west was hitting you so hard lol this is football lol not flag football lol you fans really made my stomach sick and you claim your a catholic ????????lol some of the names calling and bad attitude you guys had from the game makes me think some of you better repent that night........ but west did had plenty of chances to beat Madonna so....

      • al

        You are a moron. You talked all week how you were going to beat Madonna. You are a sorry excuse. What is wrong with your grammar man? Hail Madonna , shine so bright. State CHAMPS

        • REALLY AL

          LOOK DID YOU WATCH THAT GAME??????? WEST HAD PLENTY OF CHANCES TO WIN.....DID NERO DO ANYTHING???? NOPE COMIS WAS THE ONLY PLAYER GETTING HIS YARDS THATS IT.......LIKE I SAID WEST HAD THE BALL IN THE RED ZONE COUPLE OF TIMES....IT WAS A VERY CLOSE GAME THAT WEST COULD HAVE WON SO AL.. SHUT YOUR MOUTH.......I DO REMEMBER BOATWRIGHT HITTING NERO SO HARD LOL

      • Say What?

        Hey , west should have won, it is fans like you that give teams, and their respective schools, a bad name. You must've been bored riding in the back seat of mommy's and/or daddy's car while on the way back to the Charmco area to come up all of your rants. Don't turn your posts from this forum in as an English homework assignment, unless you can afford a D from your middle school teacher.

    • no excuses

      Tell it to the Governor. Maybe he will change it. Suck it up......take the loss with dignity like the players did.

  • shocking

    A private school wins the Class A title. What a shocking turn of events!

    • no excuses

      Quit making excuses. They whupped us on both sides of the ball. Tell them, nice game and be proud of being in the championship game.

      • Jim Crookshanks

        History of the Blue Dons
        Realizing a need for Catholic secondary education in Weirton, Monsignor Daniel Patrick Murphy began formulating plans early in the 1950's for the building of a high school. After receiving the approval of Archbishop Swint of the Wheeling diocese, Msgr. Murphy and a group of interested parishioners began a fund raising campaign of one million dollars. Weirton Steel Company and many generous individuals made large contributions. Catholic employees pledged three percent of their wages for three years. Mr. and Mrs. Starvaggi donated twelve acres of land for the school plan.

        As the dream was about to become a reality, Msgr. Daniel Patrick Murphy met a sister from the Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Peace while on a trip to Ireland. Sister Pauline brought interest in this new school to her superiors in Newark, New Jersey. They accepted the offer to staff a Catholic school in West Virginia.

        Msgr. Thomas McDonnell, co-adjuster of the Wheeling Diocese, dedicated Madonna High School on August 15, 1955. Msgr. Murphy, who was suffering from terminal cancer, was flown to the ceremonies from New York. He died on September 19, 1955, after his educational dream had come true.
        -----
        I am a West graduate and as disappointed that we lost, we must accept the lost and look developing a pasting attack. We should also respect what the folks in the in
        Weirton did in creating a private educational program.

        • Jim Crookshanks

          Well The same Magnola Team beat Madonna in the playoff last year and they if I am correct are a public school and of the Blue Dons are Private. The point I was trying to make is that how the school was founded. The ultimate idea would be for the SSAC to put these private schools in a separate division and they would play other private schools as well as the ability to play over in the border state.

          • Dons58

            Wahama beat Madonna in the championship 43-42 not Magnolia.

        • Say What?

          Jim C., thank you for the history lesson.

        • Wow

          Mike, why you yelling?

      • RJ

        Well said

  • Blue Dawn

    both martins play...both are terrible...avg about 5 pts a game

    • al

      The little brother does not play basketball but he will be a division one recruit in football. Older martin does play basketball he is not the leader on the team , Ross Comis is and they could be Class A Champs in Basketball because every one is back from last year. also Madonna will win the baseball title this school year

      • Blue Dawn

        ive watched lil brother play basketball since the 5th grade....hes a lil better than older bro, not as clumsy

      • Blue Dawn

        lil brother will be joining older bro at shepherd college. just big, slow, no skills

  • wow

    Are the 2 big linemen for Madonna going to play Basketball, I for one would like to see that. Congrats blue dons on a great season.

    • dg

      The older martin plays but he is not very good just a big body in the middle

    • Blue Dawn

      finally someone who agrees with me. that's why he is going to shepard college to play football maybe. may not be good enough to even play there.

      • Dons58

        Well Mrs. Rodgers maybe the WVSSAC should look more closely at your sons alledged recruiting. Maybe if it's true, like you say, they should strip young Mike of all his golf accomplishments. It will be a very nice day when you get to take your lying mouth back to New Martinsville. Your bashing of the Martin boys is disgraceful. You my dear have no class, and at your age never will. We welcome the day you'll leave us Madonna people alone. Good riddence, so long, and don't let the door hit your a^^ on the way out of town. BYE

        • K9 Bongo

          The Rodgers kid, came to Weirton, WV., from Magnolia, when he was in the 5th grade, because his Dad, was transferred to another position at the bank he was working! Congrats 2 the WEIRTON MADONNA BLUE DONS! Wv state champs Single A-2013! Madonna -116, in penalties. GW-88! , so
          How did the Refs, favor Madonna?

          • Dons58

            Well her claim is that her son was recruited for golf. If he came here in the 5th grade, then who was recruiting him for golf back then? Her blog is a complete lie, just like I said. She also is paying tuition just like the rest of us. Thank you K9 for pointing this out, and proving that what I wrote was true. Everyone wants to believe that their kid is the chosen one. Well those people don't want to fall from grace, they believe their lies to be true. It's very very sad.

    • Wow

      I wonder if josh, being just a kid, has feelings?

      • wow

        Metro News, thanks for removing the post I was replying to, no need for attacks on kids.

      • Blue Dawn

        josh has no feelings....hes all about himself