The Redskins victory over Cabell Midland Friday night was as complete as it was completely unexpected. Hurricane dominated the game from start to finish in all 3 phases offense, defense and special teams, and routed Midland 40-10.
Maybe it was the horse that led the Redskins onto the field, maybe it was the adjustments the coaching staff made to the offense, or perhaps just getting a chance to play at home in front of their fans, against a team that they truly do not like, whatever it was, the Redskins meant business.
Do it all kicker Tim McCutchen got the party started with a 44 yard field goal his 1st of two in the half, to give the Redskins a 3-0 lead. He would play a big role early in the contest as he converted a 1st down on a fake punt and consistently booted his kickoffs into the end zone for touchbacks. Their is no disputing that he is the best at his position in the state.
Meanwhile Hurricane's defense, as it did last week, came out strong. Midlands 1st 3 possessions were all 3 and outs, as the Knights did not even sniff a 1st down!
Offensively the Redskins were about to take the game over. Nathan Roy, basically banished to the bench a week ago, once again resurrected himself, when given another chance to start by Coach Taylor, found Ryan Moses who took a short pass along Midland's sideline and sprinted untouched 50 yards to give Hurricane an early 10-0 lead. It was Moses' first career TD.
After Hurricane's defense stopped Midland and elite RB Ivan Vaughn, who had scalded the Skins for 250 yards and 4 tds last year, Roy found RJ Engel for a 25 yard TD and the Hurricane pushed the lead to a surprising 16-0.
Midland did put together a decent drive but once they get inside Hurricane's 10 yard line the defense tightened and held the Knights to a field goal, which got Cabell Midland within 13 points 16-3, they would get no closer.
Nate Barham returned the ensuing kick off all the way to the Knights 13 yard line.
On the very next play Christian Hill, the best back in this contest, scored bumping the Redskins lead to 23-3, dare I say the rout was on!
On the next Midland possession, the first of the James Gang struck as Walker James recovered a fumble, leading to McCutchen's 2nd FG of more than 40 yards giving Hurricane a 26-6 lead.
Shortly thereafter the younger member of the James Gang got in on the act as a freshman making his first career start, J.T. James, picked off Chase Gould to thwart any chance the Knights had of getting back into this game.
The suddenly potent Redskin offense was not done scoring. "We found balance tonight," said offensive assistant Coach Green, "being able to pass the ball was a key." Roy threw his 3rd TD of the half to another super freshman, hitting Chase Hager from 31 yards out for Hager's first career TD reception. "How about that freshman?" Coach Taylor exclaimed after the game.
Hurricane led 33-3 at the break in the best single first halves of football I have witnessed in my 15+ years of watching Redskin football. Folks this was not an out-manned Winfield, or an over matched St. Albans team, this was Cabell Midland that was down 30 at half. The local Midland broadcasters agreed on their radio coverage. Stating that in all their years broadcasting Knights' games they could not recall Midland ever being down by 30 at the half.
Honestly the 2nd half was anti climatic as one would have thought Midland had the lead as they burned huge chunks of the clock on long but unproductive drives. Blake Ross recovered a fumble which ended one of the Knights time consuming drives.
"We rarely had the ball in the 2nd half," commented a happy Coach Taylor, who had suffered 2 consecutive losses at the hands of Spring Valley and Capital. As it is in sports there is no better medicine than a big win.
After a scoreless 3rd quarter, Roy threw his 4th TD on the night once again finding Hager, this time from 12 yards away and Hurricane had put up 40 and lead 40-3. Let me say that again Hurricane lead Cabell Midland 40-3! Do you think a few football fans around the state were shocked when hearing that score?
Cabell Midland was not only dominated by Hurricane but they added to their own misery with turnovers and penalties. Meanwhile Hurricane did not turn the ball over, and corrected the special team issues that tormented them last week.
Honestly this was as close to perfect as one could ask. "They beat us 6 of the last 7 games," added senior safety Charlie Womack, "and the one we won was a last second near miracle, tonight we just whipped them."
Soak it in Hurricane fans......one for the ages........... Hurricane 40 Cabell Midland 10!