VINCENT - Warren head coach Andy Schob knew his team would be in for a real test when they hosted Athens in their home opener Friday night and the undefeated Bulldogs lived up to their billing and then some as they rolled to a 42-6 non- conference victory over the Warriors.
"We knew we were going to have to play a perfect game to have any chance of winning tonight and we didn't do that," said Schob, in his fourth year as Warren head coach. "Athens is just an incredible team, probably the best we have played in several years."
Last week against Watkins Memorial in their home opener, the Bulldogs racked up 516 yards worth of total offense and they picked up right where they left off against Warren when sophomore standout quarterback Joe Burrow scampered 24 yards for a touchdown on their first of the game.
Photo courtesy of Karen Lang-Henthorn
Warren’s Trevor Cochran (18) looks to tackle Athens’ Trae Williams (2) during prep football action in Vincent Friday night.
Both teams traded turnovers as Warren quarterback Austin Klintworth's pass was intercepted by Ryan Luehrman and Warren senior Jake Powell returned the favor by picking off a Burrow pass deep in Warrior territory.
Burrow began to warm up in the second quarter as he connected a pair of times with Luehrman to move the ball deep into Warren territory before scoring his second touchdown of the first half on a 27-yard run to make it a 14-0 game.
After the Athens defense stopped the Warriors on their next possession, Bulldog junior Trae Williams broke a punt return 72-yards for another touchdown and a 20-0 Bulldog lead.
ATHENS 42 WARREN 6
Athens 7 21 14 0 - 42
Warren 0 6 0 0 - 6
A: Joe Burrow 24 yard run (Robert Orr kick) 10:19
A: Burrow 27 yd run (Orr kick) 9:25
A: Trae Williams 72 yd punt return (kick no good) 5:31
A: Ryan Luehrman 23 yd pass from Burrow (Williams run) 2:57
W: David Ryan 24 yard pass from Austin Klintworth (kick no good) :12
A: Williams 27 yd run (Orr kick) 10:22
A: Williams 80 yd run (Orr kick) 8:24
First downs: 17, Rushes-yards: 22-175, Passing yards: 214, Total yards: 389, Penalties-yards:8-60, Punts-avg: 5-36.6, Fumbles-lost: 1-1, Turnovers: 2.
First downs: 12, Rushes-yards: 47-100, Passing yards: 105, Total yards: 205, Penalties-yards: 5-45, Punts-avg: 8-34.3, Fumbles-lost: 5-2, Turnovers: 3.
Rushing: Williams 8-125 (2TD), Burrow 7-57 (2TD), Deshan Horton 4 (-3), Heath Wiseman 3 (-4). Passing: Burrow 12-20 214 yds. TD, INT, Wiseman 0-3. Receiving: Luehrman 4-77 (TD), Zacciah Saltzman 2-55, Williams 2-48, Sam Vander Ven 2-22, Adam Luehrman 1-12, Fred Stalder 1-0.
Rushing: Jake Scott 13-40, Klintworth 16-31, Mills 2-22, Justus Johnson 8-14, Andy Farnsworth 4-0, Jake Davis 3 (-1), Bryce Gandee 1 (-6).Passing: Klintworth 7-20, 105 yards, INT, TD. Receiving: Scott 2-41, Ryan 2-33 (TD), Jake Powell 1-26, Johnson 1-5, Farnsworth 1-0.
Next Games: Parkersburg South at Warren, Jackson at Athens.
The Bulldog defense was quite stingy in the opening half as they forced the Warriors to three-and-outs on five of their first six possessions.
After Klintworth was sacked and fumbled, Athens recovered near midfield with a little over four minutes to play in the half.
Three plays later Burrow connected with Luehrman on a 23-yard touchdown strike and when Williams converted the two-point play, the Athens lead had grown to 28-0.
The royal blue and white finally put together a sustained drive as they marched 63-yards in nine plays with Klintworth connecting on a beautiful touchdown pass to David Ryan with just 12 ticks left on the clock to cut the lead to 28-6 at the intermission.
"Klintworth is a gamer. He didn't have his best game here tonight and he knows that," said Schob, of his senior signal caller. "He competes and he got the chance to put the ball up to Dave Ryan who is such a big target and they got it done just before the end of the half."
Williams, who had a five-touchdown performance in Athen's 53-3 week one victory over Gallia Academy, scored his second touchdown of the night with a 27-yard run with less than two minutes gone in the third quarter and less than two minutes later the speedy back raced 80-yards untouched to put an exclamation point on another big night for the Athens offense.
"Trae (Williams) has such great lateral movement he makes that first guy miss," said Athens head coach Ryan Adams of Williams who racked up 125 yards rushing on just eight carries. "He seems to have found another gear in terms of open field speed."
Burrow completed 12-of-20 passes for 214 yards and a score, while adding 57 yards rushing on seven touches. "Joe (Burrow) is certainly a special player, but I think we have a lot of special players on this team," said Adams. "Its the combination of all eleven that makes it all work."
Jake Scott led Warren in rushing with 40 yards on 13 carries, while Klintworth completed 7-of-20 passes for 105 yards.
Athens, who improved to 3-0 with the win, will host Jackson next week, while the Warriors (1-2) remain home to host Parkersburg South.