|Skins soar past GE |
HURRICANE — Many of the Hurricane players paced the sideline, exhorting one another during the second quarter Friday night.
The Redskins had just given up a touchdown to Greenbrier East after a muffed punt. The Redskins still led by 10 points, but it was a new feeling for the Redskins, who hadn’t allowed a score in over two games after recording back-to-back shutouts over Ripley (33-0) and St. Albans (17-0).
It didn’t take long to shake off the Spartan TD, though, and the Redskins quickly responded, scoring two touchdowns before halftime en route to an easy 51-21 victory at home over Greenbrier East on a chilly senior night in front of a crowd of about 850.
“We were a little upset giving up the touchdown, especially Coach [Jack] Erwin [Hurricane’s defensive coordinator],” said Hurricane tailback Joe Lamanca. “He gets us motivated and pumped up every day in practice. It doesn’t matter who we play. We could play the Green Bay Packers, Coach Erwin wants shutouts and we do as well.”
With the win, Hurricane improved to 6-3 and has won four games in a row. The 12th-ranked (Class AAA) Redskins will travel to Putnam County rival Poca next week in an effort to improve their playoff position.
Lamanca was the one who muffed the punt to set up the Spartans touchdown, but he more than made up for it with a career night on the ground, earning 258 yards on just 20 carries. The 5-foot-7, 149-pound senior scored four touchdowns, including three on runs of 35, 5 and 6 yards and caught an 8-yard TD pass. Lamanca went over the 1,000-yard rushing mark for the season.
“It was amazing out there tonight. My line did a fabulous job,’’ he said. “They kept telling me all week I was going to get 1,000 yards, and they wanted it more than I did, I think. I appreciate those guys so much.”
Hurricane coach Willis May was especially pleased with Lamanca’s achievements.
“I’m so happy for Joe as well as our senior linemen,” May said. “They really wanted Joe to get the mark. He needed 104 yards to reach 3,000 for his career here and 221 to reach 1,000 for the year.”
Lamanca passed the 3,000 career mark with a 42-yard run with 3:20 remaining in the first quarter, and he topped the 1,000-yard mark on the season with another big run, a 38-yarder with 12 minutes left in the third quarter.
Hurricane scored on five of its first six possessions in the first half to take a 31-6 lead into halftime. At halftime, Lamanca had 174 yards on 13 carries.
With a little luck, said May, the Redskins’ record could even be better.
“We’re about two plays away from being 8-1,’’ he said, “but Poca’s going to give us their best game next week because that’s basically their playoff game. We have to be ready to play and [Poca] Coach [Bob] Lemley is one of the best. It’s going to be a game.
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Added Lamanca: “We’re extremely focused on the playoffs right now.”
For Greenbrier East (1-8), Tommy Mutter rushed for 86 yards on 16 carries.
Greenbrier East 0 6 8 7 —21
Hurricane 10 21 13 7 —51
H—FG Moore 29
H—Lamanca 35 run (Schirtzinger kick)
H—Collins 3 run (Schirtzinger kick)
GE—Mutter 3 run (run failed)
H—Hartsog 11 pass from Chapman (kick failed)
H—Lamanca 6 run (Cavanaugh pass from Chapman)
H—Lamanca 5 run (kick failed)
GE—Mutter 5 run (Mutter run)
H—Lamanca 8 pass from Chapman (Schirtzinger kick)
H—Johnson 10 run (Schirtzinger kick)
GE—Windon 11 pass from Level (Bryant kick)
First downs 10 18
Rushing yards 44-183 39-425
Passing yards 79 11
Passes 4-7 1-7
Had intercepted 1 1
Penalties-yards 8-42 7-40
Punts-avg 3-32 0-0
Fumbles-lost 2-1 2-1