By Jacob Meredith
PATASKALA — It was the worst possible combination that Teays Valley had to deal with in a 28-7 non-league loss on Friday to the host Watkins Memorial Warriors.
The Vikings struggled to move the football all night, finishing with just 129 yards of total offense, while the Warriors had no trouble getting started with a 21-point outburst in the first quarter that effectively put away the game before the sun set in Pataskala.
John Apel opened the scoring for the Warriors with a nine-yard touchdown run.
Watkins Memorial (2-1) then took advantage of a mishandled punt by the Vikings to score again on a seven-yard touchdown run by Gerald Banks.
Harrison Payne tried to spark the Vikings with a kickoff return for a touchdown, but the potential momentum-changing play was negated by a holding call.
Banks scored again later in the first quarter on a 37-yard run to the end zone that put Watkins Memorial ahead 21-0.
The Warriors tacked on their final touchdown of the night in the second quarter when they capped an 83-yard drive on a 13-yard pass from Drew Samsal to Andrew Kirk.
Teays Valley continued to battle and used a turnover that created a short field to reach the scoreboard on an 18-yard touchdown strike from Kole Nungester to Payne during the third quarter.
“Our kids never quit even after Watkins Memorial jumped out to that lead,” Teays Valley coach Brian Cross said. “We were short-handed on offense, and I was proud of the way our defense stepped up in the second half and shut out Watkins.”
Nungester was forced to leave the game later in the second half when he sustained a hard hit while scrambling. Sophomore quarterback Brady Farmer came on to finish the game.
“Kole going out hurt us, especially since we are a young team that is only dressing three seniors,” Cross noted. “I was proud of the way Brady came in, stepped up and he did a very nice job for us in a tough situation.”
Banks finished the game with 115 yards rushing and two touchdowns for the Warriors, who also utilized Samsal completing 13 of 22 passes for 163 yards and a score.
Nungester completed 8 of 19 passes for 70 yards and a touchdown, with Payne making seven receptions for 58 yards and catching the touchdown pass. Spike Woods added 47 yards rushing.
The Vikings (1-2) start their final campaign in the Mid-State League Buckeye Division next week when they host Liberty Union (0-3).
“We will go back to the drawing board and we will work to continue and become a better football team,” Cross said.
Watkins Memorial 28,
Teays Valley 7
By Quarters 1 2 3 4 F
Teays Valley 0 0 7 0 7
Watkins Memorial 21 7 0 0 28
WM — John Apel 9 run (Robbie Bricker kick).
WM — Gerald Banks 7 run (Robbie Bricker kick).
WM — Gerald Banks 47 run (Robbie Bricker kick).
WM — Andrew Kirk 13 pass from Drew Samsal (Robbie Bricker kick)
TV — Harrison Payne 18 pass from Kole Nungester (Maxwell Spencer kick).
First downs 13 15
Rushing yards 33-31 34-98
Passing yards 98 163
Comp.-Att.-Int 11-27-0 13-22-0
Total yards 129 261
Fumbles-Lost 2-2 2-1
Penalties-Yards 7-68 7-45
RUSHING – Teays Valley — Spike Woods 17-47, Jeremiah Fabbro 6-1, Ethan Schwalbauch 1-0, Griffin Gray 1-(-1), Kole Nungester 5-(-4), Brady Farmer 3-(-12). Watkins Memorial — Gerald Banks 20-115, John Apel 3-19, Love Jones 2-4, Drew Samsal 7-(-20), Brayden Windnagel 2-(-20).
PASSING – Teays Valley — Kole Nungester 8-19-0-70, Brady Farmer 3-8-0-28. Watkins Memorial — Drew Samsal 13-22-0-163.
RECEIVING – Teays Valley — Harrison Payne 7-58, Dai’preece Weaver 2-23, Cavin McDowell 1-14, Weston Gray 1-3. Watkins Memorial — Gerald Banks 4-56, Kamryn Yarger 3-56, John Apel 4-19, Braden Hulse 1-19.
Coming to Circleville this September!