The Pocahontas County High School Warriors continued their rebound October 22, following up their nail biter victory against the Pendleton County Wildcats the previous week. The Warriors had a higher scoring, but similarly close fight against the Summers County Bobcats. The final home game for the Warriors ended up being a tug of war against the Bobcats and their Wing-T offense and aggressive defense.
The night started off with the Bobcats getting the ball, returning it to the Warrior 27-yard line. Eight plays later, they were able to pound it into the end zone, but came up short on the two point conversion.
Score 6-0 Bobcats.
The Warriors would take the next kickoff and go four-and-out. The Warrior defense would stiffen, though, and force the Bobcats out after four plays on the next series. Six plays later senior #4 Frankie Burgess ran in a touchdown from one yard out; the point after snap was bobbled and no good.
Two plays after getting the ball on kickoff, the Bobcats were breaking away on a gashing run up the middle. Junior #2 Ryan Halterman swooped in and got a hand on the Bobcat running back forcing him to cough up the ball, which was recovered by sophomore #80 Clayton Burns. Eight plays later, the Warriors would return the favor when they threw an interception, giving Summers County a new set of downs, but the Warrior defense would once again step up and deny the Bobcats a score. Minutes later, early in the second quarter, the Warriors were back on offense and set up a 17-play drive, eventually culminating in a one-yard QB sneak by junior # 6 Braedan Hayhurst; the two-point conversion attempt by #77 Austin Morgan in the backfield was stopped by a knee chopping tackle. On the drive, junior war-horse #11 Evan Hamrick went down with a broken collar bone, ending his night and likely his season. The Warriors would fend off the final attempt by the Bobcat offense in the first half.
Score at halftime 12-6 Warriors.
The Warriors would start off the second half with the ball and wouldn’t waste time capitalizing. On play two of offense, Frankie Burgess would take the hand-off around the left end for 23 yards and a Warrior touchdown; point after kick by Clayton Burns was good.
Score 19-6 Warriors
The Bobcats would not go quietly into the night, though, and later in the third quarter would put together a drive and punch in another touchdown, but failed on the two point conversion.
Score 19-12 Warriors.
Early in the fourth, the Warriors would put together another 11-play drive, capped off by a 16-yard scamper by Hayhurst; point after by Burns was good.
Score 26-12 Warriors.
The Warriors would continue to let the Bobcats stay alive, as Summers County would take advantage and get a nine play drive, ending in a Bobcat touchdown; two point conversion was good.
Score 26-20 Warriors
The Warriors set up offense, but would be hamstrung by a couple of key plays. A long touchdown run by Frankie Burgess was called back due to a block in the back. The Warriors would eventually surrender the football on their own 15-yard line. The Pocahontas defense would be called on once more to save the win with less than two minutes in the game. It would rise to the occasion holding the Bobcats for the final five plays of the game securing the win.
Final Score 26-20 Warriors.
Leading on the night for the Warriors were Hayhurst in the air, 5 of 10, with one interception for 93 yards. Among the receivers, returning after a knee injury, senior #5 Cage Burdette had one reception for 50 yards, Ryan Halterman had one for 19 yards, Evan Hamrick had one screen catch for 22 yards, junior #32 Brycen Carrol had one for two yards and Frankie Burgess had one for 0-yards.
Rushing was led by Hayhurst, who had 104 yards rushing, and a two touchdowns. Frankie Burgess had 95 rushing, plus another 56 utility on kickoff return, and two touchdowns. Hamrick clocked in 25 rushing and 10 on a kickoff return before leaving the game. Junior #77 Austin Morgan had two carries for seven yards.
The Warriors played the Tygarts Valley Bulldogs October 29.
Warriors fall to the Bulldogs in a muddy match at Mill Creek
The Pocahontas County High School Warriors had a good two weeks, holding off Pendleton County and Summers County in successive home games. But the Warriors were also dealt a long tally of injuries.
Seniors Tucker McGee and Cage Burdette were both still absent from the field of play as the Warriors squared off with their trans-Cheat Mountain rivals the Tygart Valley Bulldogs.
Compounding this absence was the recent loss of Junior RB #11 Evan Hamrick to a collar bone injury and part way through the first half the loss of Junior Left Guard #62 Waylon Lucabaugh with a broken leg.
Despite the mishaps, there were some positives. The Warriors received the kickoff, threw a 60-yard pass – Junior QB #6 Braedan Hayhurst connected with Junior HB #30 Ryan Friel. The Warriors were marching. But on the goal line the Warriors threw an interception that the Bulldogs ran back for a 100-yard touchdown.
Score 7-0 Bulldogs.
From there the mud got deeper.
The night was one in which the Warrior defense largely did a good job, holding the speedy Bulldog offense to just two more scores. The Warrior offense, with a dearth of injuries and a lot of people in new places could not get traction on the slippery field Friday night.
Final Score 20-0 Bulldogs.
The Warriors will face a big challenge when they travel to Hico November 5 to face the Midland Trail Patriots in their final regular season game.