By J. DANIEL ROLLINS
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
COAL CITY —
The Battle-ground at George D. Covey Field probably resembled Woodstock more than Bull Run, as rainy conditions on Thursday left the Friday night lights shining on a muddy mess.
That didn’t seem to matter too much for the Class AA No. 6 Wyoming East Warriors, as the boys from New Richmond came to Coal City and dismissed the home team Independence Patriots 42-14.
The Warriors (8-1) scored on a Jacob Summe 19-yard scamper early in the first quarter and never seemed to look back, rallying off 28 more points in the half and allowing Gary Poindexter’s team a chance to cruise through the second half on its way to victory.
“Our first half was played exactly like we wanted to,” Poindexter said. “We bent a little on defense in the third quarter and let them get some yardage and we can’t keep doing that in the second half, but overall I’m impressed with how we played.”
Wyoming East picked up 320 total yards of offense, including six players with double digits on the ground. They were led by Summe’s 84 yards and three touchdowns.
“This feels really good (getting the win), but it’s all thanks to the (offensive) line,” Summe said.
The offensive line opened holes in the muddy field all night, allowing the Warriors backs to power their way through the Indepen-dence defense, which Poin-dexter admits wasn’t easy.
The Warriors coach was left impressed with Indepen-dence, despite its 2-7 record.
“They’re quick and they play aggressive on defense,” he said. “No, their record is no reflection on the way they play.
“But our offensive line has been really excellent.”
It’s not just the running game that has been helped by the stellar play of the offensive line. It’s opened up a passing game that has allowed quarterback Aaron Griffith and receiver Christian Hedinger to thrive.
“They’re the best,” Griffith said of his line.
Griffith threw for 58 yards and ran for 58 yards and a touchdown on the ground.
Wyoming East (8-1)...........14 21 0 7 — 42
Independence (2-7)............ 6 0 8 0 — 14
WE - Jacob Summe 19 run (Tristan Jones kick), 10:31.
I - Chris Mills 1 run (kick failed), 6:42.
WE - Christian Hedinger 41 pass from Aaron Griffith (Jones kick), 4:22.
WE - Summe 35 run (Jones kick), 11:41.
WE - Coty Bishop 5 run (Jones kick), 6:42.
WE - Summe 1 run (Jones kick), 4:22.
I - Mills 2 run (Colton Ward run), 3:21.
WE - Griffith 53 run, (Jones kick), 8:54.
RUSHING — WE: Bishop 7-38, Hedinger 2-41, Jacob Dulcie 2-26, Griffith 5-58, Brian Witt 3-13, Jacob Summe 8-84, Alec Lusk 1-2, Nik Walker 1-0. I: Ward 10-18, Brian Sexton 4-8, Dustin Justice 11-61, Brandon Treadway 4-17, Chance Rhodes 3-2, Mills 11-25.
PASSING — WE: Griffith 5-10-0-58. I: Sexton 8-12-0-104.
RECEIVING — WE: Hedinger 3-46, Dulcie 1-8, Jacob Boyce 1-4 . I: Ward 2-55, Justice 1-8, Treadway 1-8, Rhodes 1-3, Mills 2-30.
TAKEAWAYS — WE: Bishop (INT), Casey Saunders (INT).
I: Austin Parrish (fumble recovery).