Great Wall of Glen Dale Proves Immovable
JM O-Line shows nasty side
GLEN DALE — As a former quarterback, John Marshall coach Jason Willis could barely believe the words he was saying into his headset late in Friday night’s season opener in Moundsville against University.
The Hawks, having just scored to pull within a touchdown, desperately needed a stop to remain in the contest.
Coach John Kelley knew what the Monarchs had planned — running the football — because it had worked all night. So University deployed all 11 of its defenders within 3 yards of the line of scrimmage
Assistant coach ”Nate (Skrzypek) wanted to throw,” Willis said. ”I said ‘I know, but we’re still getting 4 yards a pop and I was wanting to eat the clock.
”More things can go wrong than right when you throw it.”
Willis’ confidence in the run game, despite the odds being stacked against the Monarchs at the point of attack, comes from his belief in what in Marshall County is referred to as the ”Great Wall of Glen Dale”. For the last two seasons JM’s offensive line has been a combination of nastiness and will, always finding a way for a back to pick up an extra yard or 2.
That unit is made up of center Brady Williams, left tackle Shane Hercules, left guard Gavin Lockhart, right guard Bradlee Clark, right tackle Zach Birkett and tight ends Brandon Heath and Harry Galloway. Those linemen have branded themselves as a ”Band of Brothers”.
”A lot of it is the weight room, but it’s their attitude,” Willis said. ”It’s a group that doesn’t like to get pushed around.
”They’re hard-nosed kids and it comes from our conditioning in the offseason. They yell at me and say they don’t want to do this or that, but I kept telling them they would see the difference in the second half of games.”
The Hawks sure did.
The Monarchs racked up 313 yards on the ground, led by a career-high 104 from Justin Frohnapfel. Chas McCool, who had four total touchdowns, ran for 91 yards, and John Davis kept his legs churning for 80 more,
It wasn’t all that long ago the idea of a two-platoon system was nothing more than a pipe dream at John Marshall.
But the program has grown in such of way that nobody is forced to play both offensive and defensive lines.
”That means they’re not out there and they’re fresh when we have the ball,” Willis said. ”It’s a great luxury to have at the end of games.
”Last year in our playoff game in Parkersburg, it was the same way late in the game. They knew what was coming and they couldn’t stop it.
”They take pride in that and we talk them up all the time. It doesn’t matter if the other team has 12 guys on the field if we do what we’re supposed to do.”
But as all coaches do, Willis pointed out there is still improvement to be made.
”It was impressive, but there were still mistakes made that we need to correct to make us better,” he said.
”But if play physical and play hard, I will be happy.”
As far as the early performance producing confidence for the group, Willis isn’t so sure that was necessary.
”I think they’re confident and they always have been,” he said. ”They expect to win.
”We can play with anyone on our schedule. But if we don’t come to play every week, we’re going to be in trouble.”
Offensive Players of the Week
Cole Porter, Bellaire
This guy had his way with the River defense Saturday at Nelson Field. The junior running back carried 31 times for 173 yards and scored a pair of touchdowns in a 42-16 Big Reds victory.
Brady Kolb, St. Clairsville
A hard-charging back, Kolb was a workhorse in a victory against Carrollton. He carried 35 times for 189 yards and scored a pair of touchdowns.
Defensive Players of the Week
Payton Marling, Wheeling Central
In his first game in a Maroon Knights jersey, Marling was just about everywhere. He totaled 11 tackles, broke up a pass and pulled in a fumble recovery in a 33-0 shutout at Williamstown.
Tyler Smarrella, Indian Creek
The Redskins needed every bit of this guy’s effort in a narrow victory against Cambridge to start the season. He was charted with 17.5 stops, including 1.5 sacks and two tackles for loss.
∫ Evan Schob, Fort Frye: Carried the ball 15 times for 128 yards and scored three touchdowns.
∫ Ty Conchesky, Morgantown: Was handed the ball 20 times, where he picked up 125 yards and two scores in a big, season-opening victory against Parkersburg.
∫ Cade Hannahs, Barnesville: Gained 110 yards and scored two touchdowns on 10 carries.
∫ Justin Frohnapfel, John Marshall: In his first action in the backfield, carried 19 times for 104 yards in a huge victory against University.
∫ Donavan Kirby, Chad Custer, Weir: Kirby gained 79 yards on 10 totes and scored three times while Custer racked up 82 yards on eight carries.
∫ Tyler West, Harrison Central: Picked up 136 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries.
∫ Ethan Fluharty, Valley: Rushed 15 times for 96 yards in a loss to Tygarts Valley.
∫ Mark Rucker, Tyler Consolidated: Continued to tear up opposing defenses, rushing for 171 yards and two touchdowns on 19 carries.
∫ Jalen Moman, East Liverpool: Gained 117 yards and scored two touchdowns on 17 carries in a victory against Shadyside.
∫ Rapheal Bradley, Kenya Robinson, Wheeling Park: Bradley rushed for a career-high 151 yards and scored a touchdown on 16 carries, while Robinson scored twice and gained 86 yards on nine carries.
∫ Boone Jones, Shenandoah: Exploded with an 11 of 12, 285-yard, six-touchdown effort in a rout of Frontier.
∫ Wyatt Hirt, Linsly: He was perfect, completing 8 of 8 passes for 179 yards and three touchdowns in a victory against Beaver Eastern.
∫ Anthony Coggins: Began his senior season by hitting on 25 of 39 for 236 yards.
∫ Randy Mitchell, Steubenville: Was true on 3 of 4, good for 105 yards. Also rushed for 42 yards.
∫ Jacob Wood, John Marshall: Completed 3 of 4 for 102 yards and a score.
∫ Aidan Lucey, Cameron: Making the switch from center, the senior connected on 13 of 20 for 177 yards and a pair of touchdowns in a victory against West Greene.
∫ Peyton Reed, East Liverpool: Fired for 103 yards on 8 of 11 accuracy.
∫ Alex Dunlevy, Wheeling Park: In first start, completed 13 of 17 for 161 yards and three touchdowns.
∫ Tino Kusic, Bridgeport: Completed 10 of 19 for 302 yards and four TDs.
∫ Jake Probst, Martins Ferry: Completed 6 of 11 for 130 yards and a touchdown in a victory against Buckeye Local.
∫ Anthony Sinicroppi, Edison: Completed 20 of 27 for 178 yards and a pair of TDs in a loss to Southern Local.
Good Hands Team
∫ Jules Giovengo, Trevin Tush, Linsly: Giovengo hauled in three passes for 75 yards and a score while Tush caught three for 51 yards and another score. Giovengo also returned a punt 51 yards for another TD.
∫ Kelly Hendershot, Shadyside: Was on the receiving end of nine passes for 106 yards.
∫ Preston Fox, Morgantown: Held on to three passes, good for 51 yards and a TD.
∫ Sebastian Stickler, Magnolia: Turned two catches into 90 yards and a pair of scores.
∫ Sebastian Spencer, Weir: Made three catches, good for 114 yards and a touchdown.
∫ Adam Laipply, Shenadoah: Had three grabs for 135 yards and three touchdowns.
∫ Noah Fyak, Steubenville Central: Was on the receiving end of three passes worth 91 yards and a touchdown.
∫ Trevon Ray, Bridgeport: Made four catches for 156 yards and a touchdown.
∫ Dasyn Hores, Martins Ferry: Hauled in four passes for 95 yards and a touchdown.
∫ Noah Woods, Edison: Tallied five grabs for 51 yards and two scores.
∫ Cal Kildow, Union Local: Back for another season behind center, Kildow was good on 13 of 21 passes for 169 yards and two touchdowns. He also picked up 94 yards and a touchdown on the ground.
∫ Brady Schilling, Fort Frye: Carried two times for 27 yards while catching five passes for 55 yards and a score in a rout of Belpre.
∫ James Schnegg, Beallsville: Ran eight times for 43 yards, caught two passes, had six tackles and returned five kicks for 115 yards.
∫ Tayveon Crawford, Steubenville: Returned a kickoff 80 yards for a touchdown and carried 20 times for 81 yards.
∫ Justin Heatherington, St. Clairsville: Carried seven times for 27 yards and a score, caught three passes for 57 yards and another TD, and for good measure hauled in an interception.
∫ Tate Dowler, Barnesville: Rushed for 106 yards and a TD while completing 6 of 12 for 59 yards and a second score.
∫ Chas McCool, John Marshall: Carried the ball 19 times for 91 yards and scored three touchdowns. Caught a pass and took it 51 yards for another score.
∫ Matthew Ritchea, Cameron: Hauled in five passes for 70 yards and a touchdown. Also picked up 23 yards rushing and ran in a 2-point conversion.
∫ Bray Price, Wheeling Central: Carried five times for 72 yards and a pair of scores and also caught five passes for 72 yards and another TD.
∫ Pat Mirandy, Magnolia: Rushed for 49 yards, completed 7 of 14 for 173 yards and three scores and kicked a field goal and three extra points.
∫ Tyler Komorowski, Weir: Carried nine times for 65 yards and three touchdowns and also completed 4 of 10 for 126 yards and a score in a season-opening victory against Oak Glen.
∫ Gavin Streets, Valley: Hauled in two passes for 45 yards and also rushed 19 times for 80 yards.
∫ Justin Hartzell, Steubenville Central: Carried 10 times for 67 yards and a touchdown while completing 7 of 10 for 178 yards and three scores in a blanking of Toronto.
∫ Curtis McGhee III, Wheeling Central: Did it all, picking up 127 yards and two scores on the ground while connecting on 9 of 16 for another 137 and a TD.
∫ Gavin Dietrich, Madonna: Muscled his way to 246 yards and four TDs on 30 carries. Also had five catches for 57 yards and a touchdown.
∫ Bryce McAfoose, Edison: Hauled in seven passes for 63 yards and led the defense with 12 tackles.
∫ Adam Murray, Wheeling Central: The junior and reigning Huff Award winner as West Virginia’s top defensive player started this season the way he finished last, with a team-leading 20 tackles.
∫ Bastian Gehrer, Linsly: In limited duty because of a lopsided score, Gehrer had a team-leading eight tackles including one for a loss.
∫ Nathan Bomboris, Union Local: Was charted with 11 tackles — nine solos.
∫ Kyle Storer, Isaak Myers, St. Clairsville: Storer made 12 total tackles including a sack and two stops behind the line. Meanwhile, Myers had a pair of sacks and one tackle for a loss to go into his eight total stops.
∫ Cody Allan, Indian Creek: He registered 13 tackles — two behind the line — and a sack.
∫ James Stillwagoner, Gage Adams, Magnolia: Stillwagoner led the way with a team-high 15 tackles, including 10 solos and one for a loss. Adams was in on 12 total tackles, including one for a loss and seven solos.
∫ Jermain Snodgrass, Wheeling Park: Made a team-leading 10 tackles — one for a loss — and batted down a pass.