Wayne train stays on track
WAYNE -- When a football team as successful as Wayne has been sets records, the performance must be exemplary.
The No. 1 Pioneers set a Class AA preliminary round playoff record with 680 yards of total offense Friday night in a 47-0 win over No. 9 Nicholas County in the state quarterfinals at Pioneer Field.
Wayne (12-0) will play host to No. 4 Robert C. Byrd (11-1) next week in the semifinals.
Mason Hodge ran for 144 yards and two scores, while also catching a 71-yard scoring pass. The sophomore scored on a 92-yard run on the opening play of the game.
"He's a multi-faceted guy. He's not necessarily a power runner and he's not a scat-back," Wayne coach Tom Harmon said. "He's just kind of one of those tweener guys. Having the ability to get open and catch the football, those are all bonuses."
Nearly lost in the shuffle for a change was senior running back Brandon Spurlock, who ran for 172 yards on 14 carries. Spurlock surpassed the 1,800 yard mark, and set the single-season school record for rushing yards.
But the carry that set the record might be unforgettable for a different reason. Spurlock broke into the open field with nothing but grass ahead of him, before pulling up with an apparent leg injury. He did not return.
Hodge also left the game with an injury to his ankle.
Both appeared to be in good spirits after the win.
"I think you go through these football games, there's going to be bumps and bruises, twists and aches," Harmon said. "We'll see how bad they are over the weekend and go from there. We're very fortunate here that we have a lot of guys that care and a lot of guys that pick each other up.
"I'm not too concerned about whatever faces us because I know what kind of effort we'll get out of everybody else."
Sophomore quarterback Grant Ferguson threw for 143 yards and ran for 34 more. The Pioneers rolled up 537 yards on the ground, which tied the playoff record set by James Monroe in 2005.
The Pioneers were pinned deep by long punts and penalties early, which led to the large yardage totals.
"When you get backed up like that, every down counts because you know you're not going to get four and you've got to get it out of there," Harmon said. "We did a good job of that."
Nicholas County (7-4) finished with just 139 total yards. The Grizzlies had only two first downs in the first half.
"Our coaches do a really nice job of getting our guys in the right place," Harmon said. "From a coaching standpoint, when you get them in the right spot and in a good stance and taking the first few right steps, then it's the players.
"We're fortunate we have players that really want to get to the ball and play aggressively."
Wayne advances to the semifinal round for the 10th time in the past 12 years. Robert C. Byrd, who beat Bluefield, 34-20, will be making the first semifinal appearance in school history under first year coach Bruce Carey.
Carey coached Bridgeport to the 2000 AA state title, beating Wayne in Wheeling.
NICHOLAS CO. 0 0 0 0 -- 0
WAYNE 14 20 13 0 -- 47
W -- Hodge 92 run (Stamper kick)
W -- Hodge 2 run (Stamper kick)
W -- N. Spurlock 4 run (kick failed)
W -- Hodge 71 pass from Ferguson (Stamper kick)
W -- N. Spurlock 2 run (Stamper kick)
W -- B. Spurlock 3 run (pass failed)
W -- Blankenship fumble recovery in endzone (Stamper kick)
First Downs 8 25
Rushes-yards 29-107 51-537
Passing 6-16-1 7-11-0
Passing yards 32 143
Total offense 139 680
Fumbles-lost 3-2 1-1
Penalties-yards 5-38 9-96
Punts 6-36.5 0-0.0
RUSHING -- NC: Mayes 14-61, Sagraves 8-26, Harmon 4-16, Woods 3-4. Wayne: B. Spurlock 14-172, Hodge 5-144, Egnor 10-89, Ferguson 6-34, N. Spurlock 3-10, Team 1-(-9), Langdon-Arthur 1-53, Lunsford 4-6, Fry 3-3, Darby 2-22, Perry 2-13.
PASSING -- NC: Sagraves 6-16-1, 32 yards. Wayne: Ferguson 7-11-0, 143 yards.
RECEIVING -- NC: Price 3-19, Amendola 2-13, Moore 1-0. Wayne: Cassidy 5-64, Hodge 1-71, Pyles 1-8.