From Staff Reports
Home-standing Valley overcame a slow start in the early going to post a 44-14 thumping of visiting Clay County Friday at WVU Tech’s Martin Field.
The Class A co-No. 8 Greyhounds (3-0) didn’t get a score until 1:50 left in the first quarter, but an impressive drive culminated with an 18-yard touchdown pass from Raeshawn Breckenridge to Druw Bowen and got the hosts on their way over the Class AA foe. The march was keyed by nice runs from Keyshawn Payne (10 yards), Breckenridge (16) and Darius Hutchinson (12).
From that point, Valley started clicking offensively and defensively. The Panthers could manage only 44 yards of total offense in the first half. At the same time, Valley’s offense put two more touchdowns on the board and went in at halftime with a 20-0 lead. With 8:31 left in the second quarter, Dante Wilkerson ran one in from the 3-yard line. Then, with 2:24 left in the second, Casey Stewart crossed the goal line from the 1-yard line.
The Panthers started the second half by attempting an onside kick, which Valley’s John Riddle recovered. Two plays later, Payne broke loose for a 52-yard TD gallop, and Breckenridge’s conversion run pushed the margin to 28-0 at the 11:05 mark.
Shortly thereafter, Valley’s Bowen gave his team a defensive lift, intercepting a William Stewart pass and returning it 22 yards to the end zone. Breckenridge added the two-point run for a 36-0 bulge.
Two minutes later, Casey Stewart rushed 24 yards for another Greyhound six-pointer, and Wilkerson supplied the conversion run for a 44-0 lead.
The Panthers added late scores by Jordan Lucas (80-yard run) and Tyler Quinn (3-yard run), with a conversion pass from Stewart to Stephen Cole, to provide the final 30-point margin.
Payne finished with 106 rushing yards and a score to lead the balanced Valley offense. Stewart rushed three times for 42 yards and two TDs. Breckenridge added 34 yards and Tracy Conliffe 30.
Breckenridge’s lone completion in four attempts was the TD strike to Bowen.
Lucas had nine carries for 102 yards and a TD for Clay. Quinn rushed for 56 yards and a score on 13 carries for the Panthers.
In addition to Bowen’s interception returned for a score and Riddle’s fumble recovery, Valley also received fumble recoveries from Seth Harmon and Christian White and an interception from Henry Barron-Houchins.
The Greyhounds, now co-No. 6, travel to No. 20 Fayetteville (2-2) Friday.
Through four games, Meadow Bridge’s Jake Parker leads Fayette County rushers with 1,156 yards on 108 carries, a 10.7 average, and 15 touchdowns. In three outings, Oak Hill’s Jalen Jones has rushed for 740 yards and nine scores on 45 attempts, a 16.4 average. Fayetteville’s Tasheem Saunders has compiled 455 yards and four scores on 47 carries in four games. Valley’s Keyshawn Payne has rushed 29 times for 334 yards and scored two touchdowns for the Greyhounds in their three contests.
Through the air, Fayetteville’s Will Fenton is 33-of-51 for 370 yards, five TDs and five interceptions. Valley’s Raeshawn Breckenridge has completed eight of 16 passes for 313 yards and three TDs.
Valley’s Druw Bowen has caught four passes for 163 yards, a 40.8 average, and two scores.
A more complete list of updated statistics will appear in the Tribune next week. Coaches or statisticians are urged to send updated statistics to the Tribune after this weekend’s games.
Besides the Valley-Fayetteville matchup Friday, Class AAA No. 6 Oak Hill (3-0) visits Buckhannon-Upshur (2-2), Class A co-No. 8 Meadow Bridge (4-0) travels to No. 19 Pendleton County (2-2), and Midland Trail (1-3) plays at Van.