Cougars blank Patriots, see South Charleston in playoffs
The Black Eagles from South Charleston are next for Jefferson as the first round of the Class AAA playoffs begins on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. in Shenandoah Junction.
Locked into the playoffs even before dispatching Washington, 48-0, last Friday, the Cougars remained at No. 6 even with the systematic shutout of the Patriots, who finished with another 1-9 overall record.
Jefferson will take its 8-2 record against a 7-3 South Charleston team that moved ahead one place in the ratings to No. 11 after blistering George Washington, 48-21, last week. George Washington had a 7-2 record prior to seeing the Black Eagles.
Against Washington in its annual intra-county game, Jefferson shackled the Patriots with just 72 yards of total offense and roared out to a comfortable 26-0 lead by halftime.
Getting a co-starring role alongside the defense was Jefferson’s ground offense, which totaled 229 yards on just 32 rushes. Marcus Burns had 107 yards on just 14 carries and quarterback Isaac Myers accounted for another 73 yards on five tries.
There were four rushing scores (Burns had two and Myers and Jimmy King each scored once) and three passing touchdowns as Myers found Christian Johnson, Jeffrey Gaskins and King for more points. Myers wasn’t as accurate as he had been in many games. He once had seven straight incompletions and was 9-for-25 with his on-the-move throws.
Washington was so thoroughly held in check that it could reach Jefferson’s end of the field only once.
The win was achieved in the last of four straight road games that ended Jefferson’s regular season.
It will be South Charleston that has to ride in the chartered buses all the way to Shenandoah Junction from Kanawha County, a trip that could take more than six hours with the necessary comfort stops along the way.
The Cougars had applied continuous pressure on Washington quarterback Chase Maccubbin when he attempted to pass . . . and he had to pass because the Patriots managed only five ground yards on the night. Delonte Berry had two sacks before halftime and then added an interception in the second half.
Jefferson avoided unbeatens Cabell Midland and Point Pleasant in any early round of the 16-team playoffs.
Beginning on Friday night all around the state, the Class AAA playoff schedule will have top-seeded Cabell Midland at home against 16th-ranked Princeton, 15th-seeded Musselman at No. 2 Point Pleasant, 12th-seeded Greenbrier East at 5th-seeded Martinsburg, 10th-seeded George Washington at No. 7 Huntington and No. 9 Brooke at No. 8 Morgantown.
The three playoff games on Saturday feature 13th-seeded Springs Mills at No. 4 Capital, 14th-seeded Spring Valley at No. 3 Wheeling Park and the South Charleston at Jefferson game.
A Jefferson win would propel the Cougars into the quarterfinals the next weekend where they would face the survivor of the Wheeling Park vs. Spring Valley game.
The long road of away games is over for the Cougars, at least for one week, when it’s the Black Eagles that must travel to see an unknown opponent they never play in the regular season.