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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  • Weirton mom

    Hello??? It's HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL. Voice your opinions but you all do realize you are bashing KIDS????! these kids apparently have more morals and manners than most if you. How embarrassing

  • jake s

    the blue dons definitely recruited matt green as a kicker, kickers like that don't come up out of no where their soph. year and do that good.

  • I'm honest at least

    How can people who claim to be god loving people try to say the private schools don't cheat with respect to recruitment.

  • Hinton6

    Lol the real recruiting is done at martinsburg

  • Say What?

    Now that all the whining has subsided, can we move on to girls Bball and wrestling, given the fact that WV Metro News completely(and purposely) missed the girls state volleyball tournament.

  • Say What?

    Definitely a whole lot of butthurt over Madonna beating Greenbrier West.

  • mrotha

    I think that if the private school resides in a county that has a AAA school, they should be playing AA competition. Simply because they draw their students from a larger population. Its only fair game. No, I didn't go to a 1A school that always lost to a Catholic school in the first round of playoffs... The Women's 1A playoffs last year made me ill listening to a Catholic school destroy first and second round competition. It was absolutely shameful.

    • Say What?

      Hire better coaches.

    • Say What?

      And I think that year-round practice, in any sport, should be made legal and coaches can attend. That way the large single A teams( in most states they would be AA) can get in some extra prep time before having to go up against the small catholic and Christian schools whose athletes all have personal trainers and tutors AND a fitness center on every street corner which is accessible 24/7.

    • mrotha

      And for these private school head coaches gloat about their team, blah, blah, blah. I wish the media would simply stop interviewing them and their players... pathetic.

  • Say What?

    At Jim Crookshanks... How could Magnolia have beaten Madonna in the playoffs last year when Madonna lost to Wahama in the title game? It wasn't that long ago for you not to remember, meaning, it has only been mentioned several times in the media. Put the bottle back in the cabinet.

  • K9

    Madonna/111, in Penalties! GW-88, in Penalties. MADONNA-24!!!! GW-14. Enough said!

  • cb

    I am really sorry to read this on a news article about a high school state championship game. I truly hope these are high school kids making these posts and not grown adults. As someone who went to Greenbrier West, I am happy they made it as far as they did. I also think they put up a great showing against a powerhouse of a team.

    Can we just say it was a good game,played by the two best A schools in the state? Madonna didnt win it last year, and they came back this year with a mission. Greenbrier West people, pelase let this motivate your students to have a chip on their shoulder and work even harder this coming year to do the same thing.

    This is a high school game, played by high school kids. Please at least pretend to be mature and handle a loss well.

    Most people are average, that's why it is called average. Your teams excelled into the state championship on both parts that is worthy of a good job, and lets work on next year. By making excuses for why you didnt win, you are diluting the motivation that someone was better and you need to work harder to be the best.

  • Blue don are state champs

    Hey greenbrier west we have a better Qc and u guys can't stop the pass...

  • Blue don are state champs

    hey blue don really u guys could not stop Ross and josh Martin does not sux.. Hey blue dawn u son sucks... I know who u r... Cry some more maybe u r son can played short this year... And Frazier was over rated.. Greenbrier can u guys cover the pass.. Nope... No answer for will bowser...

    • blue dons are champs please

      Frazier was over rated lol he was hold all night you guys hold him all night long lol you guys had Nero stood there and watch Frazier thats why Frazier did not get to the quarterback much plus you guys was holding him all that dang time... you only won 24 to 14 blue don are champs lol west had the ball at your 10 yard lines couple of times but never scored west had plenty of times,,, was made to many mistakes thats the bottom line OK........

  • Jdawg

    We use to play Madonna and beat them like a drum, even knocked them out of the playoffs one year when we literally sucked. Good ole Guyan Valley go Cats!!!!!

  • Larry

    The pope has submitted a formal request to the WVSSAC to have the single A division renamed the Catholic Athletic Division.

  • westpride


    Good luck to the blue don athletes. I mean if they keep the attitude they have now I am sure there future is very dim. I am proud my son is a Cavalier. He has been taught to be respectful. I am proud how he acts on and off the field. He can hold his head high. Can your boys do that? Just ask them how they talked on the field. Our kids have respect and pride.

    • cb

      Yes but by coming to a website and bad mouthing the other team you are showing less class than the players on the field. You are an adult with a child in high school so I am going to guess you are at least 35. Can you just not say, "Congrats on your win" and move on. You teach your children nothing by acting this way. I am a GWHS alumni and I am so proud of the team this year. Your son has every reason to hang his head high.

      In life it is okay to lose, that is what gives us the motivation to get even better.