Hampshire holds back Tigers, 30-7

Hampshire defender Dennis Hammons scooped a bouncing football off the Wimer Field grass and dashed 95 yards, dashing any hopes of an Elkins comeback when he crossed into end zone to give the Trojans a 30-7 victory on Friday night.

Elkins had driven down to a mere yard from paydirt with four minutes still remaining in the contest when the ball squirted loose.

“That was my fault,” Elkins coach Greg Hott lamented. “I had put a young man into a position he was unfamiliar with. I thought he would jam a wedge in there.”

The second half belong to Hampshire, as it broke open a tight game at the intermission with three second half scores.

After an illegal blocking penalty nullified a punt return touchdown by Dane Heavener, Valka Terziyski put up a score that did count when he started right and then decided to go left for a 53-yard touchdown run early in the third quarter.

Evan Staley booted a 27-yard field goal just a few minutes before Hammons fumble recovery and touchdown.

“We are very, very young,” Hott said. “With the exception of a couple of guys, we are replacing a lot of three-year starters. We are still trying to find our identity, and we will. I have a good group of young men.”

Elkins, 0-2, had pulled to within a touchdown in the waning seconds of the first half, using a 21-play drive that was kept alive by a roughing the punter penalty. Dylan Lucas carried nine times for 33 yards on that drive, and Ben Lonergan carried the ball another six times for 30 yards.

But it was Garrett Riggleman who got that last needed yard, plowing straight ahead to cross the scoring stripe after Elkins had held on to the ball for more than 10 minutes of the second quarter.

“After (Hampshire’s) first offensive series, we finally started playing football,” Hott said. “We want those (sustained) drives. That’s been our goal.”

Hampshire had jumped out to a 14-0 lead near the start of the second quarter on Shane Ennis’ 1-yard quarterback sneak. Ennis had opened Hampshire’s scoring early in the first quarter when he connected with Heavener on a 42-yard touchdown pass.

Elkins will host arch-rival Buckhannon-Upshur next Friday in a Homecoming clash.