It’s Back-to-Back Unbeatens for Beallsville
Dave Caldwell knows how to deliver an encore performance.
Beallsville High’s longtime coaching guru guided his Blue Devils to a perfect 10-0 regular season in 2006. Not to be outdone, this season’s Blue Devils repeated perfection with a dominating season-long effort, capped by Friday night’s 35-0 blanking of visiting Fort Frye.
The 35-point cushion marked the closest contest of the season for Caldwell’s team.
In the process, Beallsville clinched another berth in the Ohio Division VI, Region 23 playoffs. The Blue Devils will likely visit River or Shadyside a week from today.
It marks the Devils’ third consecutive state berth and sixth overall.
The back-to-back 10-0 seasons equals the total of perfect campaigns in the 60-plus years of Beallsville football.
The Blue Devils may fall short of one goal, however, as Weirton Madonna appears to have a leg up on the OVAC Class A crown. Beallsville captured last season’s championship.
”To go 10-0 in back-to-back seasons is truly amazing,” Caldwell said. ”It’ a tribute to everyone involved in the program.
”I am very happy for our seniors. They are quality young men.
”Our kids have done everything asked of them.”
Beallsville was never threatened by the Cadets. The hosts put 22 points on the board in the opening quarter and watched their defense bottle up the invaders.
Fort Frye, in falling to 2-8, never got untracked offensively. The Cadets failed to complete a pass, missing the mark on all four attempts.
Moreover, they gained just 94 yards on the ground and finished with a mere three first downs.
”I was real pleased with how we played (Friday). Fort Frye came in with a big, physical team and we performed very well defensively,” Caldwell said. ”Kevin (Stoney) threw the ball well and we showed nice balance as we were able to run the ball effectively.”
Stoney — a talented and versatile senior — completed 12 of 18 passes for 205 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
He also rushed for a score.
Junior Tyler Thornberry totaled 64 yards rushing and a touchdown on just nine totes. Senior wideout Kevin Neiswanger led the receiving corps with four catches, covering 80 yards and a score.
Beallsville scored on its second possession. The two- play, 16-yard drive was set up by a 62-yard punt return by shifty Jimmy Reisz. Thornberry scored from the 3 with 7:11 left in the opening frame. Stoney ran in the bonus points.
Later in the quarter, Beallsville strung together a six-play, 45-yard drive, capped by Neiswanger’s 30-yard grab from Stoney with 1:48 showing.
On Fort Frye’s ensuing possession, Aaron Lucas covered a Cadets’ fumble at the visitors’ 9. Two plays later, Stoney sneaked it in with 57 second left.
Beallsville took the second half kickoff and marched 64 yards nine plays to stretch its margin as Stoney drilled Luke Lucas from 10 yards out.
Reisz closed the scoring with a 1-yard burst with 10:12 to play.
”We know we will be facing a quality opponent next week in either River or Steubenville Central,” Caldwell said. ”We will just line up and give it our best shot.”’