Sept 28, 2018 Wheeling Park: Game
Big Reds Beat Patriots 57-51 In Final Seconds of Wild, Wild Contest
Game Statistics / Game Photos
It was expected to be a high-scoring football game.
But no one could have expected just how high-scoring, wild and exciting a game it would be as Parkersburg knocked Wheeling Park from the ranks of the undefeated with a 57-51 victory in the final seconds at Stadium Field.
The game had a bit of everything as momentum and emotions swung back and forth like a tennis match while the final score resembled a basketball contest.
After blowing a 24-point lead and watching Park go ahead 51-50 with just 52 seconds left in the contest, the Big Reds pulled the old hook-and-ladder play out of mothballs to win the contest with seven seconds remaining on a 47-yard pass and lateral play with Braeden Mason catching the ball at the Wheeling 33 and then tossing it back to Dylan Shaver who raced into the end zone for the game-winning score.
Wheeling Park, which came into the game averaging 50 points a game, hit that mark with less than a minute to play on a fourth-and-16 pass play from the 32-yard line that saw Patriot receiver Xavier Morris catch the ball on the goal line sliding on his rear end with his feet straddling the pylon. The extra point kick made it 51-50 in favor of the visitors as they hoped to get revenge for blowing a big lead and losing to the Big Reds a year ago.
PHS started its final drive from its own 26 yard line with 47 seconds remaining and the visitors appeared to have iced the victory just a few ticks later when they intercepted a pass near midfield. But Park was called for roughing the passer and PHS had another chance.
A pass to Shaver gained 13 yards to the Wheeling 47 and PHS took its last timeout with 18 ticks remaining.
Quarterback Jake Johnson, who had a huge, record-setting night in the air, then hit Mason over the middle at the Park 33 yard line and the little speedster lateraled the ball to a streaking Shaver, who sped up the middle to the end zone for the winning score.
The Big Reds had to kickoff but the squib kick was taken by Jack Stakem at the 25 and he was trapped to end the game. Stakem had already scored two touchdowns in the game.
Wheeling Park took away Parkersburg’s run game, holding the Big Reds to just 40 yards, and sacked the quarterback four times but Johnson managed to overcome that by throwing for 429 yards (a single game school record) and six touchdowns (another single game record). He completed 30 passes (another record) in 43 attempts with two interceptions.
The Big Reds nearly had three receivers gain 100 or more yards. Brenton Strange caught nine passes for 177 yards while Mason caught eight for 92 and Shaver seven for 108. Strange also set a career record with his 21st and 22nd touchdown receptions, bettering the 20 mark held by Karson Snyder and Jeremy Bell.
Wheeling Park totaled a whopping 514 yards on offense but suffered four turnovers as Anthony Craig and Kionte Peacock came up with interceptions for PHS while Hayden Morris recovered two fumbles.
The Big Reds jumped out to a 21-0 lead less than seven minutes into the game as they took advantage of two fumble recoveries.
After driving 83 yards on 10 plays to score on Tyler Moler’s eight yard run, PHS got the ball back a minute later when Morris recovered a fumble forced by Brandon Braham on the Park 37. Five plays later Johnson hit Mason for eight yards and another score.
On the ensuing kickoff return, Park fumbled again and Morris was there to recover on the Park 22. Three plays later Strange caught a pass at the goal line with a defender holding on to him with both hands. That made it 21-0 after Issac Withrow’s extra point and there was just 6:52 gone in the contest.
But Wheeling Park wasn’t averaging 50 points per game without good reason as the Patriots responded by going 65 yards in nine plays when Alex Dunlevy rolling around on a fourth and goal play from the four yard line before finding Devaughn McWhorter in the right corner of the end zone for a touchdown with 2:01 left in the first quarter.
The Big Reds scored their fourth straight touchdown just 42 seconds into the second quarter when Shaver caught a six yard pass while sliding on his back in the end zone.
Dunlevy, who had not thrown an interception all season, then got picked off by Craig, who tipped the pass across the middle and plucked it out of the air to return it 38 yards to the Wheeling four yard line.
Three straight incomplete passes forced PHS to try a field goal but Withrow was good from 27 yards away to make it 31-7 with 9:13 left in the first half.
Stakem got Park back on the board four minutes later on a 26 yard reception but PHS appeared to have stopped further damage with a fumble recovery only to have that negated by a defensive holding penalty. That allowed Dunlevy to find Stakem again as time expired as the senior receiver caught the ball on the one yard line and side-stepped inside the pylon for the six yard touchdown play that cut the lead to 31-21 at the half.
A 29-yard run by Dunlevy, who threw for four touchdowns and 256 yards himself, plus a personal foul penalty on PHS enabled Wheeling to cut the lead to 31-28 with an eight yard touchdown run with 8:50 on the third period clock.
The Big Reds answered that with a 65 yard, 10-play drive that was highlight by a 31-yard catch and run by Strange. The touchdown came on a five yard pass to Shane Miller, who was returning from an injury which had kept him out all season.
PHS tacked on another score with 37 seconds left in the third quarter when Johnson went deep over the middle to Strange, who kicked his speed into a higher gear to out-run the defense and score easily. But a holding penalty on the extra point caused the kick to fail and PHS had a 44-28 lead.
That comfortable margin disappeared in 11 seconds as McWhorter find a seam up the left sideline and returned the ensuing kickoff 83 yards for a touchdown.
Another personal foul penalty on PHS on the following kickoff return put the ball back on the 14 yard line and the Big Reds gave up a safety when a reverse went awry and Mason was dropped in the end zone for a safety to cut the lead to 44-36 with nine seconds left in the third period.
Wheeling took the free kick on its 43 and scored in eight plays with Dunlevy keeping it around left end and then passed to Xavier Morris for the two-point conversion to tie the score at 44-44 with 9:26 to play.
The teams traded interceptions but PHS got the better of the trade as Peacock returned Dunlevy’s pass 25 yards to the Park 10 yard line.
Although they were penalized for a false start on the first play, the Big Reds were able to score in three plays with Moler going over the left side, meeting a defender head-on at the goal line and bouncing outside and into the end zone. The extra point kick was no good and the lead was only six points, 50-44, with 5:06 remaining.
A 41-yard run by Rapheal Bradley on the first play from scrimmage took the ball to midfield and from there the Patriots were able to grind it out to the 23 yard line. Miller’s 16-yard quarterback sack put the visitors back to the 39 with just 1:05 remaining. But after a short pass to Kenya Robinson to the 32, Dunlevy then found a sliding Morris at the goal line to tie the game and Andrew Glass gave his team a one-point advantage with the PAT kick.
Peacock returned the kickoff to the 26 yard line and with Park playing a semi-prevent defense, PHS got the break it needed on the roughing the passer penalty and set up the game-winning play during the timeout with 25 seconds remaining.
The win evened the Big Reds’ record at 3-3 going into next week’s game against invading George Washington.
Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Total
Wheeling Park (4-1) 7 14 15 15 51
Parkersburg (3-3) 21 10 13 13 57
Qtr Time Scoring play
1st 08:22 PHS - Tyler Moler 8 yd run (Issac Withrow kick), 10-83 2:23
05:51 PHS - Braeden Mason 8 yd pass from Jake Johnson (Issac Withrow kick), 5-37 1:42
05:08 PHS - Brenton Strange 24 yd pass from Jake Johnson (Issac Withrow kick), 3-22 0:35
02:01 WP - Devaughn McWhorter 4 yd pass from Alex Dunlevy (Andrew Glass kick), 9-65 3:03
2nd 11:18 PHS - Dylan Shaver 6 yd pass from Jake Johnson (Issac Withrow kick), 8-60 2:36
09:13 PHS - Issac Withrow 27 yd field goal, 4--5 0:29
05:19 WP - Jack Stakem 26 yd pass from Alex Dunlevy (Andrew Glass kick), 10-63 3:47
00:00 WP - Jack Stakem 6 yd pass from Alex Dunlevy (Andrew Glass kick), 10-95 2:50
3rd 08:50 WP - Devaughn McWhorter 8 yd run (Andrew Glass kick), 6-76 1:58
03:59 PHS - Shane Miller 5 yd pass from Jake Johnson (Issac Withrow kick), 10-65 4:46
00:37 PHS - Brenton Strange 36 yd pass from Jake Johnson (Issac Withrow kick failed), 5-60 2:19
00:26 WP - Devaughn McWhorter 83 yd kickoff return (Alex Dunlevy pass intcpt)
00:09 WP - TEAM safety
4th 09:26 WP - Alex Dunlevy 25 yd run (Xavier Morris pass from Alex Dunlevy), 8-59 2:39
05:06 PHS - Tyler Moler 3 yd run (Issac Withrow kick failed), 3-10 1:18
00:52 WP - Xavier Morris 32 yd pass from Alex Dunlevy (Andrew Glass kick), 10-91 4:09
00:07 PHS - Dylan Shaver 33 yd lateral from Braeden Mason on 14 yd pass from Jake Johnson (Issac Withrow kick), 4-74 0:40
FIRST DOWNS 24 23
RUSHES-YARDS (NET) 47-258 27-40
PASSING YDS (NET) 256 429
Passes Att-Comp-Int 22-14-2 43-30-1
TOTAL OFFENSE PLAYS-YARDS 69-514 70-466
Fumble Returns-Yards 0-0 0-0
Punt Returns-Yards 0-0 0-0
Kickoff Returns-Yards 11-147 6-106
Interception Returns-Yards 1-0 2-63
Punts (Number-Avg) 2-30.5 1-37.0
Fumbles-Lost 4-2 1-0
Penalties-Yards 12-99 10-71
Possession Time 24:42 23:18
Third-Down Conversions 7 of 12 7 of 12
Fourth-Down Conversions 3 of 3 2 of 3
Red-Zone Scores-Chances 3-3 6-8
Sacks By: Number-Yards 4-33 1-16
RUSHING: Wheeling Park-Rapheal Bradley 22-124; Alex Dunlevy 9-68; Kenya Robinson 13-44; Devaughn McWhorter 3-22. Parkersburg-Tyler Moler 20-60; Braeden Mason 2-4; Jake Johnson 5-minus 24.
PASSING: Wheeling Park-Alex Dunlevy 14-22-2-256. Parkersburg-Jake Johnson 30-43-1-429.
RECEIVING: Wheeling Park-Jack Stakem 7-156; Xavier Morris 3-53; Devaughn McWhorter 2-20; Dustin VanSickle 1-20; Kenya Robinson 1-7. Parkersburg-Brenton Strange 9-177; Braeden Mason 8-92; Dylan Shaver 7-108; Tyler Moler 4-42; Joel Butcher 1-5; Shane Miller 1-5.
INTERCEPTIONS: Wheeling Park-Xavier Morris 1-0. Parkersburg-Anthony Craig 1-38; Kionte Peacock 1-25.
FUMBLES: Wheeling Park-Kenya Robinson 2-1; Alex Dunlevy 1-0; Dustin VanSickle 1-1. Parkersburg-Tyler Moler 1-0.