NITRO — After three losses to start the season the Chapmanville Regional High School football team needed a win in the worst way.
The Tigers got it on Friday night as Chapmanville won 48-25 at Nitro over the Wildcats at Nitro’s Underwood Field.
Chapmanville improved to 1-3 overall and 1-3 in the Cardinal Conference with the win, while Nitro dropped to 1-3, 0-3. Chapmanville also improved to 4-0 all-time in the series with the Wildcats.
“After our slow start to this season, our players and coaches continued to show up and put in work,” Chapmanville coach Rob Dial said. “Tonight, their faith and hard work paid off. This was a quality win because Nitro is a well coached and athletic team.”
Chapmanville jumped out to a 28-13 lead at halftime and then coasted.
Senior quarterback Chase Berry had a big night for the Tigers, rushing and passing for more than 100 yards each. He carried the ball 12 times for 102 yards and was 12 of 15 passing — an 80 percent completion rate — for 177 yards with two touchdowns.
Tigers’ fullback Josh Bumgarner also had a good night, running for 124 yards on 18 carries and scoring a touchdown.
Jaxson Turner racked up 69 yards on the ground on 13 carries and scored a touchdown and also caught three passes out of the backfield for 11 yards.
Freshman wide receiver Brody Dalton reeled in four passes for 84 yards and scored two touchdowns.
Senior wide receiver Waylon Hensley had three catches for 67 yards and a TD. He also had a carry for six yards.
The Tigers started out the game with a bang as Berry tossed a 57-yard TD bomb to Hensley on the first play from scrimmage. CRHS ran a fake on the extra point attempt and Turner ran it into the end zone as Chapmanville led 8-0 with 11:42 showing on the first quarter clock.
“We started fast with Waylon making a great catch and run on the first play of the game,” Dial said. “Brody Dalton had a break out game tonight at receiver. Jaxson Turner had some really physical runs in the second half as well. Our quarterback played a complete game tonight. His stats speak for themselves, but I was really pleased with his composure and decision making tonight.”
Then with 3:27 to go in the first quarter, Berry ran in for a 21-yard touchdown. The two-point conversion failed but the Tigers led 14-0.
Nitro then dented the scoreboard with 11:13 left until halftime as Trevor Lowe fired a 71-yard touchdown pass to Anthony Jackson. The PAT by Bradley Lewis as good as the Wildcats cut Chapmanville’s lead in half at 14-7.
With 6:10 left until halftime Turner’s 1-yard TD plunge put the Tigers up 20-7. The two-point conversion failed.
Nitro answered on its next possession with 3:37 to go as Lowe tossed a 33-yard TD pass to Dallas Hazelett. The conversion was no good but the score put the Wildcats to within 20-13.
With with 56 ticks to go until the break the Tigers responded as Berry connected with Dalton on a 31-yard TD pass. Berry ran in the two-point conversion to make it 28-13 CRHS at the half.
Berry then hit Dalton to open the second half scoring on a 24-yard touchdown pass with 8:44 left in the third quarter. Berry tacked on the two-point conversion run as Chapmanville led 36-13.
The Wildcats came right back with 5:19 to go as Kristian Johnson scored on a 24-yard touchdown run as Nitro pulled to within 36-19.
Then with 3:03 left in the third, Berry’s 6-yard touchdown run made it 42-19 Tigers.
Bumgarner followed with an 11-yard TD run with 2:18 left as CRHS led 48-19.
Nitro scored one last touchdown on the game’s final play as Lowe ran in from 8 yards out.
Jacob Mullins added two catches for 15 yards in the game.
Caleb Whitt led the Chapmanville defense with eight solo tackles and one assist.
Colby Collins had five solo tackles and three assists.
David Peluso finished with four solos and two assists and also intercepted a pass. Bumgarner had four tackles and four assists and a fumble recovery.
Josh Atwood and Elijah Stollings each had three tackles and two assists. Evan Plumley contributed three tackles and one assist and a sack.
Nate Walsh also had a three tackles and an assist.
Brady Raines, Alex Freeman and Turner all had two solos and one assist. Alex Miller also had two solo tackles.
Hensley had one solo and one assisted stop. Ryan Chapman, Kalen Green, Gabe Silva and Dakota Davis all had solo tackles.
Dial said the Tigers’ defense played very well.
“Our defense did a good job of containing the big play in the second half,” he said. “We gave up a two big pass plays, otherwise, we were solid. We tackled so much better tonight and our Friday night rookies are maturing each week. One of those rookies, David Peluso, played really well in pass coverage. Caleb Whitt seemed to be in on a lot of tackles tonight. He was constantly around the ball. And our guys in the box, Collins, Walsh, Stollings, Plumley, Atwood and Bummy were physical. We kinda wore on them with our size.”
Berry punted once for 36 yards.
The Tigers were penalized eight times for 90 yards. The Wildcats had five flags for 45 yards.
Dial said Chapmanville’s offensive line also played well.
“Speaking of physical, our O-line was great in the second half,” he said. “Nitro loaded the box and we still got a push. In the fourth quarter, we gave it to our old school fullback, Bummy and let him run it between the tackles and salt the game away. I would like to know how many yards Bumgarner had after contact. He was double tough all night. Our last drive of the game he managed the clock well, Bummy and Turner protected the ball and our O-line just kept grinding.
“Overall, a great team win. Even our special teams played a great second half. We had a kickoff reach the end zone for a touch back, it’s been years since that’s happened for the Tigers.”
Chapmanville is scheduled to return to action this Friday night at home against Scott. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. at Tiger Stadium.
Paul Adkins is the sports editor of the Logan Banner. Follow him on Twitter @PAdkinsBanner or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.