TENNERTON – The Buckhannon-Upshur football Buccaneers put together one of their better performances of the season against the Preston Knights Friday night during Senior Night at Freal “Red” Crites Memorial Stadium.
They still couldn’t though overcome three turnovers and the running of Preston’s Jeffrey Townsend as they dropped a 27-13 decision as they honored their 14 seniors prior to the game kicking off.
Townsend gained 199 yards on 35 carries and scored twice.
The game started off well enough for the Bucs and they recovered the squib-onside kick when Landon McLean fell on the ball for the hosts at the Preston 38-yard line.
The Bucs moved the ball down to the Preston 13-yard line but fumbled it away in the red zone.
The two teams traded punts on their next possessions with Preston taking over at their own 32-yard line following a B-U punt with 2:31 left in the first quarter.
Preston marched 68 yards in nine plays with Trevor Thomas calling his own number from one-yard out for the score with 10:31 left in the second quarter.
Timothy Wiles made the point-after kick as the Knights took a 7-0 lead.
An interception by the Knights later in the quarter set up their second score.
Starting at their own 47-yard line, it took them 12 plays to find the end zone as Townsend ran in it from seven yards out with 29 seconds left in the half.
The kick failed but Preston took a 13-0 lead into the half.
The Bucs were forced to punt on their first possession of the second half with Preston taking the ball over at midfield.
Nine plays later they were in the end zone again as Townsend bulled it in from two yards out.
Townsend’s conversion run was good as Preston upped their lead to 21-0 with 5:35 left in the third quarter.
Buckhannon fumbled away their next possession but held Preston on downs at the B-U 20-yard line.
It took them nine plays to find the end zone as Ryan Strader kept it himself going in from two yards out for the B-U score with 9:55 remaining in the game.
The big plays of the drive were a Strader pass that went to Sterlin Thropp for 19 yards and a pair of 15- yard runs by Thropp and Trenton Westftall.
A low snap caused the extra-point kick to be blocked, but the Bucs were on the board, down 21-6.
Buckhannon-Upshur went for an onside kick with McLean recovering for the Bucs again at the Preston 41-yard line.
The drive stalled out however at the Preston 25-yard line.
Preston fumbled away the ball on their next drive with the Bucs taking over at midfield with under five minutes to play.
Seven plays later, Westfall carried it in between the tackles for the B-U score with 3:19 remaining.
Westfall also carried in the conversion run close the gap to just one possession, at 21-14.
The Bucs went for another onside kick but couldn’t recover this one as Preston fell on the football at the B-U 47-yard line with 3:18 left in the game.
Preston put the game out of reach as they went the 47 yards in five plays as Colton Rosenbeger went 28 yards for the touchdown with 2:12 left in the contest.
The kick failed but the Knights went up 27-13.
The Bucs moved the ball to the Preston 27-yard line, but time ran out on them.
Buckhannon-Upshur accumulated 217 yards of offense getting 111 on the ground and 106 through the air.
Westfall went over 100 yards for the first time this season with 109 yards on 17 carries.
Strader completed 12 of his 23 attempts for 106 yards.
Thropp caught four passes for 42 yards.
Preston improved to 4-5 on the season.
The Bucs dropped to 1-8 overall.
They will close out their season this Friday at Elkins.
Preston 0 13 8 6 – 27
Buckhannon-Upshur 0 0 0 13 – 13
Preston – Trevor Thomas, 1-yard run (Timothy Wiles kick).
Preston – Jeffrey Townsend, 7-yard run (kick failed).
Preston – Townsend, 2-yard run (Townsend run).
Buckhannon-Upshur – Ryan Strader, 2-yard run (kick blocked).
Buckhannon-Upshur – Trenton Westfall, 2-yard run (Westfall run).
Preston – Colten Rosenberger, 28-yard run (kick failed).
First downs – Preston: 20 (15 rushing, 1 passing, 4 penalty); Buckhannon-Upshur: 15 (6 rushing, 6 passing, 3 penalty).
Rushing yards – Preston 52-275; Buckhannon-Upshur 23-111.
Passing yards – Preston 15; Buckhannon-Upshur 106.
Total yards – Preston 290; Buckhannon-Upshur: 217.
Passes – Preston 2-9-0; Buckhannon-Upshur 12-23-1.
Penalties – Preston 10-97; Buckhannon-Upshur 8-79.
Punts – Preston 1-33.0; Buckhannon-Upshur 3-16.3.
Fumbles – Preston 2; Buckhannon-Upshur 3.
Fumbles lost – Preston 2; Buckhannon-Upshur 2.
All-Return Yards – Preston 0; Buckhannon-Upshur 31.
Preston – Jeffrey Townsend 35-199 (2 touchdowns); Jesse Gribble 8-36; Colten Rosenberger 1-28 (1 touchdown); Ayden Bishoff 4-20; Devyn Knotts 1-8; Trevor Thomas 3-(-16) (1 touchdown).
Buckhannon-Upshur – Trenton Westfall 17-109 (1 touchdown); Sterling Thropp 5-24; Ryan Strader 9-(-11) (1 touchdown); team 2-(-11). Totals 23-111 (2 touchdowns).
Preston – Thomas 2-for-9 for 15 yards, 0 touchdowns, 0 interceptions.
Buckhannon-Upshur – Strader 12-for-23 for 106 yards, 0 touchdowns, 1 interception.
Preston – Jaxson Lewis 2-15.
Buckhannon-Upshur – Thropp 4-42; Landon Mclean 2-19; Westfall 1-18; Tyler Kuhn 2-16; Dominik Rodrigue 1-10; Anthony Cannone 1-1. Totals 12-106.