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Magnolia Falters Again in 2nd Half

NEW MARTINSVILLE — For the second straight game, Magnolia coach Dave Chapman felt like his squad turned in a solid performance in the first half. However, after the Blue Eagles came out of the locker room for the second, it was a different story.

Being down by only one score, (14-7), Magnolia felt like it had some momentum going into halftime. However, St. Marys had other plans. The Blue Devils scored 27 unanswered points in the second half to secure a 41-7 victory over the Blue Eagles Friday night at Alumni Field inside Bill Stewart Stadium.

It was almost a mirror-image of Magnolia’s game last week against Berkeley Springs. After being up by three going into the fourth, the Blue Eagles gave up 34 points in the fourth.

“We talked about that going out at the (second) half. We got the ball first and had the momentum coming in,” Chapman said.

“It’s frustrating. Two straight weeks, we put together two solid first halves together. But in the second half, it seems like we just need something good to happen early in the quarter. Everything we did wasn’t very good. I wish I could put my finger on it. I told the boys that. I’m not feeling sorry or bad, we just can’t catch a break. I felt there was a couple of things that went against us in the first half. That’s (St. Marys) a good football team over there and they have a lot to do with sometimes the way you look on Fridays. I’m not going to say we played bad, but that’s a good football team. I will say that.”

And the Blue Devils did get off to a semi-quick start scoring on their two of their first three drives. Brennan Boron collected 57 yards on the first play of St. Marys’ second possession to get down to the Blue Eagles’ 1. Cyle West ended the drive on the next play to put the first points on the board. After a Magnolia fumble on the ensuing possession, St. Marys marched down the field again. Trey Moss had a 1-yard score of his own. After a two-point conversion, the score read 14-0 with 5:14 left in the first quarter.

It was the only points that St. Marys could produce as the Magnolia defense stepped up. Dakota Leek and Brendan Mirandy each had interceptions while the Blue Eagles also forced a turnover on downs.

“It’s a four quarter game and you try to make adjustments at halftime and thankfully the guys came out in the second half and in my opinion played better ball,” St. Marys coach Jodi Mote said. “That’s a credit to them and our staff for working with these guys. You just try to get better To be playing Game 7 in this COVID year, it’s amazing. It was definitely special for sure. I have tremendous respect for Coach Chapman and Magnolia for the tradition they have. It’s been a very series dominated by then through the years. We’re just thankful to be able to come out with a win.”

Magnolia responded on the ensuing possession after St. Marys’ second touchdown as Jason Beisel broke free and ran up the sideline from 61 yards out to put the score at 14-7 with 2:17 left in the first quarter.

Unfortunately, that was all the points the Blue Eagles could collect.

St. Marys scored on their first two possessions of the second half to take a comfortable 27-7 lead with 16 seconds to go in the third.

In the fourth, Boron found Logan Rice from eight yards out while Moss had a 55-yard scoring run.

“I tip my hat to St. Marys,” Chapman said. “They’re a good football team. But, they’re not 41-7 better than us. But we have to take care of the ball and do something with it, especially in the red zone. I just felt like we squandered on a couple of opportunities.”

Moss paced the ground attack as he totaled 179 yards and three touchdowns. Boron also cracked the century mark with his elusiveness at quarterback. He finished with 153 yards on the ground.

The Blue Eagles put the ball on the ground six times, losing three of them.

Beisel tallied 106 yards on 21 attempts.

St. Marys 41, Magnolia 7

St. Marys 14 0 13 14 — 41

Magnolia 7 0 0 0 — 7

S — West 1 run (kick failed), 6:48

S — Moss 1 run (Boron pass to Bortey), 5:14

M — Beisel 61 run (Mirandy kick), 2:17

S — Moss 5 run (Morrison kick), 7:52

S — Boron 1 run (kick failed), :16

S — Rice 8 pass from Boron (Morrison kick), 6:34

S — Moss 55 run (Morrison kick), 2:56

Rushing: St. Marys 50-374-5td (Moss 21-179-3td, Long 5-41, Boron 17-153-td, West 4-10-td, Team 2-(-17), Bortey 1-8). Magnolia 35-74-td (Beisel 21-106-td, Johnson 1-(-4), Powell 3-17, Team 3-(-37), Johnson 0-0, Mirandy 2-(-18), Vargo 3-24, Gatian 1-(-14)).

Passing: St. Marys 2-8-15-td-2x (all by Boron). Magnolia 5-21-38 (Mirandy 4-15-17, Beisel 0-1, Vargo 1-5-21).

Receiving: 2-15 (all by Long). Magnolia 5-38 (Powell 1-0, Johnson 1-6, VArgo 1-1, Postlethwait 1-10, Toman 1-21).

First Downs: St. Marys 18, Magnolia 9.

Penalties: St. Marys 5-45, Magnolia 0-0.

Fumbles: St. Marys 4-3, Magnolia 6-3.

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