All three Boone County varsity football team went on the road to open the 2013 season and all came up short.
Tug Valley beat Sherman, 20-6; Van lost to Meadow Bridge 56-20; and Scott blew a 29-13 halftime lead, only to lose to Herbert Hoover, 40-35.
Stories from McClathy-Tribune distribution service:
* Strong second half leads Herbert Hoover past Scott
By Rick Ryan
The Charleston Gazette
(MCT) Aug. 31—CHARLESTON, W.Va. — After a couple of years languishing at the bottom of the Class AA ratings, Herbert Hoover apparently decided it didn’t like the view.
That realization seemed to happen at halftime of Friday’s opener against Scott.
Shaun Dotson led a stirring second-half rally for the host Huskies, scoring two of his four touchdowns in the fourth quarter as Hoover came all the way back for a 40-35 victory at steamy Joe Cowley Field.
The Skyhawks, who led 29-13 at halftime, scored on a 32-yard Cody Brown to Dylan Dehart pass with 28 seconds left in the game to shave their deficit to five points, but Brenden Holbrook recovered the ensuing onside kick to seal it for Hoover.
Dotson, who left the game on a few occasions in the second half with leg cramps, finished with 165 yards and three TDs on 31 carries and also caught three passes for 104 yards, including a 52-yard scoring connection from Holbrook on what amounted to a jump ball.
In the fourth quarter, Dotson scored on runs of 4 and 10 yards about four minutes apart, turning a 29-26 deficit into a 40-29 lead with 1:56 remaining in the game.
The rousing comeback may have surprised a lot of people around the state — Hoover had gone 3-17 combined the past two seasons and the Skyhawks were coming off a state playoff quarterfinal spot last year and returned seven starters on both offense and defense.
But it didn’t surprise the Huskies, who did a fair amount of soul-searching at the break.
“We had this big speech at halftime about how hard we worked in the off-season,” Dotson said. “We wanted this game to be ours.
“We worked really hard for this. Some people thought we weren’t really good. We proved them wrong.”
It all started so swimmingly for Scott, which moved 72, 51 and 55 yards for touchdowns on its first three possessions to go ahead 22-7 and bumped that lead to 29-13 by halftime. The first carries for running backs Cam Loftus and Triston Crone gained 27 and 23 yards, respectively.
The combination of Brown to Dehart was working well much of the night, with Brown completing 17 of 30 passes for 256 yards and two scores and Dehart catching eight balls for 126 yards and two TDs.
But it started to unravel a bit in the second half for the Skyhawks, who threw two interceptions, lost a second-half fumble and were flagged 11 times for 96 yards. In addition, Brown was sacked thrice in the fourth quarter as Hoover’s line started to dominate. Brown also had to leave the game more than once with leg cramps.
Scott’s first four possessions of the second half ended in a lost fumble, a punt and two failed fourth-down plays. Loftus and Crone were bottled up after their swift start and finished with a combined 16 carries for 77 yards. Crone did catch four passes for 83 yards, including a beautifully-designed screen pass for a 47-yard score.
Holbrook (4 of 7 for 114 yards), who threw two first-half interceptions for Hoover, was replaced in the second half by junior Tyler Americo. Both started games last season after Holbrook was injured in the opener and Americo took over under center.
Americo hit on 3 of 6 passes for 23 yards and ran nine times for 45 yards and a TD, but most of the offense was provided by Dotson and fullback Colton Thomas (13 carries, 76 yards, one TD).
“I wanted to be out there really bad,” said Dotson, who kept coming back in the game despite cramps. “I was trying my best to get back out there.”
Triston Hager intercepted a pair of first-half passes for the Huskies. Garrett Roberts returned an interception 33 yards for a Scott score.
Reach Rick Ryan at 304-348-5175 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
(c) 2013 The Charleston Gazette (Charleston, W.Va.)
Visit The Charleston Gazette (Charleston, W.Va.) at www.wvgazette.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services.
Former Scott and Van high schools player Riffe shines for GW.
* Riffe shines, GW holds off South Charleston rally
By Derek Taylor
Charleston Daily Mail
(MCT) Aug. 30—CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Draven Riffe barely knows the George Washington High School fight song, sung by the Patriots at the conclusion of each football game.
Patriot fans sure know the name Draven Riffe by today.
The senior running back — a transfer from Van who spent his first two years of high school at Scott and then played at Van — ran for 250 yards and three touchdowns on 28 carries Thursday night, leading a bruising Class AAA No. 8 Patriots (1-0) running attack in a 34-27 win over No. 6 South Charleston at Steve Edwards Sr. Field.
“We learned it the other day,” Riffe said with a nervous laugh after his GW debut, which spearheaded a running game that chewed up 512 yards on 55 rushing attempts.
Riffe was one of three GW ball-carriers to eclipse the 100-yard mark in the mutual season opener. Senior Jacob Jackson carried nine times for 131 yards and junior fullback Austin Blake — subbing in for an injured senior Zach Malone — carried 12 times for 106 yards.
Riffe took his first carry of the season and raced 62 yards for a touchdown on GW’s opening drive. The hosts never trailed, though it wasn’t until an overwhelming second quarter that they put themselves in position to actually win in a rout.
“The only thing I have to say, really, is that we win with our offensive line,” Riffe said. “Our offensive and defensive lines, really, our big guys. Without them, it would have been a whole different game.”
South Charleston (0-1) answered each of GW’s first two scores — both by Riffe — with touchdown drives of its own, but when Riffe scored his third TD on 1-yard run with 7:17 left in the half, SC had no answer.
“You just have to get a hat on a hat,” SC first-year Coach Donnie Mays said. “We couldn’t do it tonight. It’s discouraging, because it’s a simple game. We made some adjustments and some personnel changes at halftime, but we got too far behind.”
George Washington led 34-14 at the break.
GW chewed up yards in chunks in the first half and continued to do the same after halftime, but mistakes allowed SC to creep back into the game.
Jon Alexander, who had transferred to GW from Hargrave Military Academy after leaving South Charleston midway through the 2012 season, didn’t throw a pass until less than 4 minutes left in the first half. His third pass, with 11:40 left in the fourth quarter, was intercepted by former teammate Marquel Hampton and returned 92 yards for a touchdown that cut GW’s lead to 34-27.
The GW defense made sure the Black Eagles never got any closer. After having some success in the first half throwing the football, SC quarterback Kentre Grier found his passing lanes less frequently in the third and fourth quarters. He finished by completing 15-of-32 passes for 203 yards and a touchdown, but was intercepted twice — both times by Riffe.
Grier threw just one interception in 5 1/2 games as SC’s quarterback a year ago.
“They’ve really done a good job of jelling. They’ve bought into the process that we’re having, and it is a process,” GW Coach Steve Edwards Jr. said of his team. “We’re building a new team and building a new identity. They’re doing a good job with it, so I’m really tickled to death for him tonight.
“I’m really happy with the line. They did a great job for a bunch of guys who haven’t been together for a long time. There were some nice holes to run through.”
George Washington returns to action next week at Ashland (Ky.) Paul Blazer, while South Charleston plays its first home game of the season when it plays host to St. Albans.
South Charleston 7 7 6 7 — 27
George Washington 7 27 0 0 — 34
GW — Draven Riffe 62 run (Reed Deer kick), 9:44
SC — Kentre Grier 3 run (Jacob Gordon kick), 3:08
GW — Riffe 1 run (Deer kick), 11:15
SC — A.D. Cunningham 7 pass from Grier (Gordon kick), 8:52
GW — Riffe 1 run (Deer kick), 7:17
GW — Jacob Jackson 69 run (Deer kick), 2:45
GW — Jackson 19 run (kick failed), 1:06
SC — Kevin Forrest 25 fumble return (kick blocked), 4:41
SC — Marquel Hampton 92 interception return (Gordon kick), 11:40
First downs 11 23
Total yards 269 519
Rushes-yards 23-66 55-512
Passing yards 203 7
Comp-Att-Int 15-32-2 1-3-1
Fumbles-lost 1-0 4-3
Penalties-yards 5-41 5-30
Punts-Avg. 5-35.0 2-28.5
Rushing: SC — A.D. Cunningham 15-57, Kevin Forrest 1-7, Kentre Grier 7-2; GW — Draven Riffe 28-250, Jacob Jackson 9-131, Austin Blake 12-106, Zach Malone 3-20, Jon Alexander 3-5.
Passing: SC — Grier 15-32-2-203; GW — Alexander 1-3-1-7.
Receiving: SC — Kevin Forrest 6-93, Fred Crosier 7-48, B.J. Moore 1-37, Marquel Hampton 1-17, Cunningham 2-8; GW — Austin Giacomo 1-7.
(c) 2013 the Charleston Daily Mail (Charleston, W.Va.)
Visit the Charleston Daily Mail (Charleston, W.Va.) at www.dailymail.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services.