Another scoring surge keeps Shepherd unbeaten
Shepherd may have ceded Glenville the game’s first points, but then the unbeaten Rams took a lead that may have been an uncomfortable one at times but was never overtaken by the homestanding Pioneers.
As has been the case in its other four wins of the Mountain East Conference season, the Rams were creative in achieving their touchdowns, eventually leaving Gilmer County and Ike and Sue Morris Stadium with a satisfying 48-31 win last Saturday.
The nationally-ranked Rams will carry a 5-0 record into this week’s 12-noon home game against a revitalized West Virginia State team.
In getting past the previously once-beaten Pioneers, Shepherd scored when Angelo Jean-Louis blocked a punt and recovered it for a touchdown and Keon Robinson scooted 85 yards with a punt return.
In a first of sorts, Shepherd running back Jabre Lolley had two “home run” touchdown catches on passes thrown by Jeff Ziemba. Previously, Lolley had been a little-used target.
Ziemba went through another game without an interception and threw for nearly 300 yards. He has yet to be intercepted this season.
The Rams had their most successful ground game of the season with Lolley and Allen Cross combining for more than 200 rushing yards.
Glenville played without all-conference running back Rahmann Lee, but had its offensive moments and continually pressed the Shepherd lead until the Rams moved in front by 17 points late in the third quarter.
Glenville has two losses while Shepherd remains the league’s only unbeaten team and Charleston has only one loss, that a 45-25 blemish applied by Shepherd.
Once the annual doormat in both the WVIAC and the Mountain East, a suddenly rejuvenated West Virginia State is Shepherd’s opponent this week.
Now 4-2 overall, the Yellow Jackets have not enjoyed a four-win season in more years than they would like to remember.
Also, Shepherd head coach Monte Cater is now in his 29th year as Shepherd’s boss and his career record against the Yellow Jackets is 28-0.
In curtailing Glenville’s upset bid, the Rams were mostly healthy after actually enjoying an open date on October 3 and getting back Octavius Thomas from the injured list and having Jake Kingston, James Gupton and Lolley not bothered by previous injury troubles.
Gupton had more tackles than any other Shepherd player.
Hall of Fame weekend will be celebrated with an induction banquet on Friday, October 16, and then the newest members of the Shepherd Athletic Hall of Fame getting introductions on the field at the Shepherd vs. West Virginia State football game.