TENNERTON – The Buckhannon-Upshur Middle School Little Buc football team built a 20-0 lead and then put their ball control offense to work in the second half for a 28-0 victory over the Robert L. Bland Patriots Thursday evening at Freal “Red” Crites Memorial Stadium.
The Little Bucs limited the Patriots to just one drive in the second half, allowing them just five yards on four plays.
The Little Bucs had just two drives in the second half, but they lasted over seven minutes and six minutes as the Patriots had the ball for just under 2 ½ minutes in the second half.
The Little Bucs outgained Robert L. Bland by a 289-61 margin.
Buckhannon-Upshur amassed 275 yards on the ground and 14 through the air.
Wyatt Morris led the offense with 133 yards on the ground and scored twice on 14 carries and Caiden Bleigh added 46 yards on four attempts with one score.
“I thought we played well,” remarked Buckhannon-Upshur Middle School head coach Dave Chipps. “We gave them yards they shouldn’t have had making some mistakes, but I give the team credit, they didn’t let the Patriots in the end zone. Kudos to the defense for getting the shutout.”
The Little Bucs held Robert L. Bland on downs on their first possession and took over at their own 49-yard line.
It took the Little Bucs just five plays to find the end zone as Morris ran it over the right side for a 35-yard score.
Morris broke several tackles on the play and stumbled his way into the end zone after breaking free from a Patriot defender with 4:05 showing on the first-quarter clock.
Ethan McCarty was stopped short on the two-point conversion run but the Little Bucs led by a 6-0 score.
The Little Bucs forced a Robert L. Bland punt on their next possession and started their second drive at the Patriot 46-yard line.
Five plays later, they found the end zone again as Caiden Bleigh scored from 19 yards out breaking a final tackler at the five-yard line.
McCarty was good this time on his conversion run as the Little Bucs took a 14-0 lead with 49 seconds remaining in the first quarter.
B-UMS forced another Patriot punt and went right back to work on their third score of the game.
Starting at the Patriot 41-yard line, they found the end zone in five plays again as Morris kept it up the middle for a 26-yard scoring run with 5:48 left in the half.
The conversion run failed, but the Little Bucs led by a 20-0 score, which they would take into the break with them.
The Little Bucs took the second-half kick-off and chewed up almost the entire third quarter with the seven minute-plus drive.
They went 56 yards in 15 plays with the drive ending when McCarty plunged over on a keeper from one yard out.
McCarty went over right tackle for a good two-point conversion leaving the Little Bucs up by a 28-0 score.
“We came out of the half and got out of our no-huddle offense and ate some clock,” said Chipps. “When you can put a drive together like we did with only eight minute quarters, you can chew it up pretty quickly.”
The Patriots went three and out and punted the ball back to the Little Bucs.
It was the last time Robert L. Bland would have the football as the Little Bucs ran out the clock with a six-minute drive to end the contest.
“I think we are good football team,” noted Chipps. “We just have to get better each week. We have a lot of inexperienced kids, especially in the backfield, but we are coming along. This team is smart, coachable and they just keep getting better. They work hard in practice and that is the key.”
The Little Bucs, now 3-0 on the season, will return to action this Wednesday when they visit Shinnston for their first road game of the year, a battle with the Lincoln Cougars.
Kick-off was still to be determined for either 6 or 6:30 p.m.
Robert L. Bland 0 0 0 0 – 0
Buckhannon-Upshur 14 6 8 0 – 28
Buckhannon-Upshur – Wyatt Morris, 35-yard run (run failed)
Buckhannon-Upshur – Caiden Bleigh, 19-yard run (Ethan McCarty run)
Buckhannon-Upshur – Morris, 26-yard run (run failed)
Buckhannon-Upshur – McCarty, 1-yard run (McCarty run)
First downs – Robert L. Bland: 4 (2 rushing, 1 passing, 1 penalty); Buckhannon-Upshur: 15 (14 rushing, 0 passing, 1 penalty).
Rushing yards – Robert L. Bland: 20-41; Buckhannon-Upshur: 36-275.
Passing yards – Robert L. Bland: 20; Buckhannon-Upshur: 14.
Total yards – Robert L. Bland: 61; Buckhannon-Upshur: 289.
Passes – Robert L. Bland: 2-10-1; Buckhannon-Upshur: 1-3-0.
Penalties – Robert L. Bland: 2-10; Buckhannon-Upshur: 5-45.
Punts – Robert L. Bland: 2-26.5; Buckhannon-Upshur: 0-0.0.
Fumbles – Robert L. Bland: 2; Buckhannon-Upshur: 1.
Fumbles lost – Robert L. Bland 0; Buckhannon-Upshur: 1.
All-return yards – Robert L. Bland 47; Buckhannon-Upshur: 21.
Robert L. Bland – Jake Padgett 9-33; Logan Boyce 6-9; Alex Goodwin 3-2; Caden Kelley 2-(-3). Totals 20-41.
Buckhannon-Upshur – Wyatt Morris 14-133 (2 touchdowns); Caiden Bleigh 4-46 (1 touchdown); Ethan McCarty 7-38 (1 touchdown); Daniel Hedrick 4-27; Brody Jeran 6-27; Kadyn Baisden 1-4. Totals 36-275 (4 touchdowns).
Robert L. Bland – Kelley 2-for-10 for 20 yards, 0 touchdowns, 1 interception.
Buckhannon-Upshur – McCarty 1-for-3 for 14 yard, 0 touchdowns, 0 interceptions.
Robert L. Bland – Tyler Morris 1-15; Boyce 1-5. Totals 2-20.
Buckhannon-Upshur – Chase Hackett 1-14.