WELLSBURG - Brett McLean wasn't going to allow himself to be laughed at this time.
After he rolled the dice on a splash play to open Friday night's game against Brooke - a 40-yard touchdown pass from Matt Kinnick to Dan Monteroso - he went right back to it the next time the Red Devils had the ball.
When it worked again, this time the same duo hooked up for 60 yards and a score, he tried it a third time. It finally failed, but if it hadn't, would he have tried again?
St. Clairsville’s Cole Stephen, left, and Ben Coleman sack Brooke quarterback Alec Buchmelter during the Red Devils’ 44-14 victory Friday at Brooke Memorial Stadium.
Photo by Alex Kozlowski
''Absolutely,'' McLean said after St. Clairsville finished off a 44-14 beating of the Bruins on some sparkling new turf at Brooke Memorial Stadium.
''We make fun of ourselves and all football coaches because sometimes when a play works really well, you never see the team go back to it,'' McLean said. ''If we could do that, why not throw it again is what we said. We were fortunate enough he made the catch. Then the third time, what the heck, we rolled the dice.''
Bruins first-year coach Sean Blumette didn't blame McLean one bit.
''If you watch our Parkersburg film, we ran one pass route 16 or 17 times,'' he said. ''Until you cover it ... ''
Still, this game wound up being more than just Kinnick lofting perfect passes and Monteroso running right under them for touchdowns ... sort of.
They wound up connecting two more times for scores with Kinnick completing 12 of 15 attempts for 270 yards and six touchdowns, while Monteroso finished with six catches for 176 yards and four scores (with all of the Boston College recruit's catches coming in the first half).
Jaylon Brown, who rushed for 150 yards in last week's victory against Wheeling Park, added 101 on 10 carries. J.C. Coleman caught a 23-yard touchdown pass and Jay Gossett hauled in a 4-yard scoring strike from Kinnick.
The whole experience was a little dizzying, Blumette said of a rare high school game that saw eight touchdowns combined between the two teams, all on passing scores.
Against this St. Clairsville team, you must pick your poison.
''St. Clairsville has probably been, in the 17 years I've been in coaching, one of the hardest teams I've ever had to prepare for with the number of weapons that they have,'' Blumette said. ''They have the ability to run the ball when they want, when they need to. And they also have weapons to throw it. You have to be able to cover four legitimate threats at all times.
''They were spreading us out and making us cover more ground than we were comfortable covering, and again, to their credit, they took advantage of the situation. In all honesty, it's going to sound hollow at this point, but schematically we were fine. We just don't match up well athletically.''
In between Monteroso's first two touchdown catches, which took a combined 17 seconds to cover 100 yards, Blumette rolled the dice and went for it on fourth-and-3 from his own 48. It didn't work, with QB Alec Buchmelter getting sacked for a loss of 8 on the play.
''We knew from the get-go if we were going to be successful, we were going to have to control the ball,'' Blumette said. ''We figured if we could go out and get a first down and keep that ball moving, we'd be all right. And then we turned around and did exactly what we said we couldn't do.''
Brooke did move the ball a little better in the second half, capping a pair of scoring drives with Buchmeter touchdown passes of 19 yards to Joe Staffilino and 9 yards to freshman Justin Laughrie.
Buchmelter finished 7 of 14 for 89 yards and two TDs.