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Williamstown remains sharp, downs Tyler

Photo by Neal Smith Williamstown’s Rickie Allen (3) carries the ball during a high school football game against Tyler Consolidated Friday in Kidwell, W.Va.

KIDWELL, W.Va — The running duo of signal-caller Maxwell Molessa and tailback Rickie Allen were just too much for host Tyler Consolidated to handle here Friday night in a battle of ranked Class A Little Kanawha Conference programs as No. 5 Williamstown rolled past the No. 14 Silver Knights, 42-22.

Molessa, who hit 4 of 6 passes for 74 yards, finished with 21 rushes for a game-high 220 yards and scored a pair of six-pointers. Allen rushed 18 times for 109 yards and found paydirt four times as the Yellowjackets of head coach Chris Beck improved to 6-1 with a home game next Friday against Ohio powerhouse Fort Frye.

“It’s going to get harder as it goes, but we fought,” said Maxwell, who hit tight end Kent Wigal three times for 57 yards and Colt Hesson once for 17 stripes. “We always fought.

“The group of kids, we were determined and had a chip on our shoulder the whole night. It was really a one-two and we’re going to kick your butt all night. That was our mindset and we went out and produced.”

Tyler, now 4-3 with Magnolia invading next week, picked up a first down on the initial series of the game before Jayden Helmick punted and pinned WHS at its own 3.

All the ‘Jackets did was march 97 yards in 10 plays, taking 4:36 off the clock, as the visitors led for good following Molessa’s 16-yard TD burst and the first of six Isaac Joy extra points.

WHS forced another Tyler punt and scored on its second possession as well. Although Case Landis had a tackle for loss on Allen on third-and-2 from the TCHS 12, Molessa gained 6 yards for a first down and then Allen went the other 7 to make it 14-0 with just four ticks gone in the second quarter.

The Silver Knights of head man Ryan Walton followed with their best drive of the contest. Sean Winfrey, who rushed 31 times for 178 yards, carried the ball 11 straight times before bulling in from the 1 to make it 14-6 with 5:07 left in the half.

Molessa, though, came right back after the Silver Knight score with a 46-yard gain where he shredded an arm tackle. Allen finished off the drive with a 2-yard TD plunge to make it 21-6.

Disaster struck on the next play for the hosts as quarterback Trenton Huffman, who finished 7 of 13 for 82 yards, was pressured and hit by Colton Melrose. That led to a floating pass that Allen was able to intercept. WHS had to go just 36 yards for the score and Molessa punched it in from the 1 to make it 28-6 with 1:11 remaining before the break.

“That was a big momentum play for us to get the pick and score and get up three scores,” admitted coach Beck.

However, the Silver Knights had a chance to score before halftime. They had two chances from the WHS 19, but a pass fell incomplete and the final play resulted in a Winfrey 14-yard run to the 5.

Although the Tyler defense forced consecutive punts to open the second half, the hosts didn’t score until their second possession when Winfrey had a 3-yard TD. His two-point rushing conversion cut the deficit to 28-14 with 4:01 to go in the third.

The two score difference didn’t last long as Allen broke loose and darted 60 yards for a touchdown on the next WHS play.

Winfrey added a 2-yard TD and Weston Henderson’s two-point conversion pass from Huffman made it 35-22 early in the fourth, but those were the final points for TCHS.

Allen added his fourth six-pointer of the night on the next series via a 29-yard TD to cap the scoring.

“That’s a really good Tyler football team,” added coach Beck. “I was really impressed with our offensive line tonight. I thought they did a really fabulous job of executing at a high level, being fundamentally sound and playing physical.

“This was a huge game for us points-wise. Usually, I only give them one night to enjoy it. I told them to enjoy this until noon tomorrow then we got to get ready for the next one. We got our hands full next week.”

Helmick finished with three grabs for 54 yards and Brady Strode had two catches for 16 yards in the setback.

Contact Jay Bennett at jbennett@newsandsentinel.com

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