Timberwolves rule Generals
WINFIELD -- You know it's a bit of a strange game for Spring Valley when Elijah Wellman has more yards passing than rushing at halftime.
Nonetheless, the Class AAA No. 7 Timberwolves (7-3) had little trouble at No. 23 Winfield (4-6), defeating the Generals, 41-7, Friday on Senior Night for the Generals.
For the third straight contest, Spring Valley head coach Brad Dingess went away from Spring Valley's traditional power run game early, trying to get sophomore quarterback Tyler Brown more experience throwing the ball and the offense more time running out of spread formations.
On Spring Valley's first scoring drive, Brown hit a 42-yard pass to Tyler Robertson that set up an 8-yard touchdown run for Ryan George.
Wellman, who is typically at fullback and running between the gaps for Spring Valley, was lined up at quarterback on a second and 33 when he hit a 63-yard bomb to Patrick Eastham for the Wolves second score of the first quarter.
Spring Valley was troubled by some bobbled snaps out of the shotgun, and a first-half fumble.
However, the Timberwolves defense limited the Generals to just over 100 yards in the first half, and Winfield didn't convert a first down until about the six-minute mark in the second quarter. Winfield only converted three first downs in the first half, and Spring Valley's turnovers never resulted in points for the Generals.
Turnovers did hurt Winfield, as Spring Valley picked off quarterback Toby Show three times, twice when the Generals were in the red zone.
"We came out and did some things differently," Dingess said. "We probably threw the ball more than we have all season.
"We had some turnovers, dropped balls and stupid penalties, but we didn't let that stop us."
The coach said he liked his team's work ethic in a game where the Timberwolves kept their focus even when things were going wrong.
"With the playoffs starting next week, and this being senior night here, this could have been a trap game," Dingess said. "But our kids worked through it."
Spring Valley is now looking at hosting a playoff game, which seems light years from just a couple of months ago, when the team was 0-2 and fighting just to keep their season from jumping the tracks.
The Timberwolves finish the regular season on a four-game winning streak and have gone 7-1 after the first two weeks of the season.
"It says a lot about our seniors and our team leadership," Dingess said. "Our seniors never let the team lose focus. It's a great team that grew up right in front of our eyes."
Both Winfield and Spring Valley honored Generals senior Jeremy Huff on the first play of the game.
Huff, who is battling cancer, dressed for the game and lined up at center, snapping the ball to Show, who took a knee. Spring Valley didn't bring any contact on the play.
Huff was carried to the sidelines on the shoulders of his teammates and the game resumed.
SPRING VALLEY 14 13 14 0 -- 41
WINFIELD 0 0 0 7 -- 7
SV -- George 8 run (Sam Brody kick).
SV -- Eastham 63 pass from Wellman (Brody kick).
SV -- Wellman 3 run (Brody kick).
SV -- Eastham 36 pass from Brown (kick failed).
SV -- George 3 run (Brody kick).
SV -- Robertson 32 pass from Brown (Kyle O'Neal kick).
W -- Chris Turner 32 pass from Show (Aaron Saddler kick).
Total yards 527 224
First downs 20 11
Rushes-yards 47-290 27-38
Comp-Att-Int 6-14-0 13-23-3
Passing yards 227 186
Penalties-Yds 9-80 4-40
Fumbles-Lost 4-2 3-1
RUSHING -- SV: George 14-102, Wellman, 16-55, Brown, 6-106; Robertson, 1-4; 1-7; Page, 1- minus 3; Brewer, 2-0; Stephen Jones, 4-8; Brent Runyon, 3-9. WIN: Lewis, 20-47; Turner, 1-7; Show, 6-minus 12.
PASSING -- SV: Brown 5-11, 124 yards; Wellman, 1-2, 63. WIN: Show 13-23-3, 186 yards.
RECEIVING -- SV: Eastham, 2-99; Robertson, 2-74; Wellman, 2-54. WIN: Turner, 4-53; Lewis, 6-76; Hathaway, 2-55; Tyler Hill, 1-12.