– Highlights from the Bridgeport-Winfield game are posted above by Jack Withrow with play-by-play radio calls from Travis Jones on WAJR-FM
BRIDGEPORT, W.Va. — Bridgeport and Mingo Central both won Class AA quarterfinal playoff matchups on Friday night.
No. 3 Bridgeport beat No. 11 Winfield 42-13 as running back Jake Bowen totaled 212 yards and four touchdowns on 29 carries.
“We played well and I think our game last week against Weir, a tough game for us, got our kids’ attention and we had a really good week of practice,” said Bridgeport coach John Cole. “Winfield has a good football team and it’s tough to go on the road, but our kids really played well tonight.”
Bridgeport entered Friday’s game outscoring opponents 152-10 in the first quarter and led 14-7 on Friday after a quarter of play.
It was another strong defensive showing from the Indians who haven’t given up more than 22 points in a game since it surrendered 28 to Wheeling Park back on September 1.
“Our defensive coaches have done a great job and they got the team ready to play this week,” Cole said. “(Our defense) really executed. That Winfield offense is good. Once our kids got used to seeing that spread (offense), our rush lanes got a little better and we brought some pressure. Our players executed (the game plan) and made it happen.”
Bridgeport moves on to face either No. 7 Point Pleasant or No. 2 Bluefield in the semifinals. It’s the seventh straight semifinal appearance for the Indians.
The other Class AA quarterfinal on Friday night saw No. 1 and defending state champion Mingo Central beat No. 8 Liberty (Harrison) 53-22.
Miners’ quarterback Jeremy Dillon totaled 250 yards of offense and accounted for four touchdowns (106 yards passing and two scores, to go along with 144 yards rushing and two more touchdowns).
Dawson Elia also added 82 rushing yards and scored four total touchdowns (three rushing, one receiving) in the win as well.
Mingo Central (12-0) led 25-14 at the break, but pulled away with a 28-0 third quarter effort.
“It’s been a special season that has carried over from last year,” said Mingo Central coach Joey Fields. “We regrouped at the half and told the guys to take one play at a time and we have a little better effort.
“That third quarter was huge,” he continued. “It’s such a momentum game for us. We feed off of our offense and our defense was able to make some plays – then we got rolling. But we have to continue to finish.”
The Miners put up 378 offensive yards on just 29 plays, while Liberty (8-3) totaled 258 yards on 61 plays.
Mingo Central moves on to face either No. 4 Fairmont Senior or No. 5 Wayne in the semifinals.
“We’re excited,” Fields said. “I’m sure our fans will be ready to go. Any time you are playing on Thanksgiving weekend, that’s special for your program and that’s special for your school. Our kids our excited.”