West Virginia’s high school football playoffs don’t start until November.
But don’t tell that to Wyoming East coach Gary Poindexter.
“We told our guys that every game from now on is a playoff game,” Poindexter said after his No. 14 Warriors beat No. 10 River View, 10-6. on Friday night at New Richmond.
East was in danger of falling out of the playoff picture after an upset loss at Mount View last week.
“Our goal all year, especially the seniors, is to make the playoffs,” said Ty Treadway, who caught a 15-yard touchdown pass from Aaron Griffith in the third quarter. “We want to win these last five games and have a home game.”
WEHS and River View were in a defensive struggle for most of the night.
The Warriors bottled the Raiders up in the first half, not allowing a first down until there was less than a minute left and not allowing them inside the East 45.
“The defense played great,” Treadway commented.
East had one good drive in the second quarter, marching from its own 11 to the River View 11.
Jacob Summe, who ran for 138 yards on 27 tries, had a 14-yard pick up to the WE 39. Later, a pass interference call moved the ball to the Raiders 45.
Summer had runs of eight an 15 as East reached the 12. The drive stalled, and Chris Cecil’s field goal attempt was wide.
The Warriors, as has been their pattern all year, gradually took control of the line of scrimmage in the second half.
“That’s been our plan since (we started getting ready for this season),” Poindexter commented. “Let our big guys up front take over.”
On its first series of the third period, East constructed an 11-play, 60-yard drive.
On fourth and long at the RV 15, Aaron Griffith flipped a short pass over the middle to Treadway, who took it in for the score with 6:54 showing.
Cecil’s PAT kick made it 7-0.
“It was just a little dump pass, something we work on in practice,” Treadway remarked.
River View nearly answered with a score of its own. Jordan Doston returned the kickoff inside the Warriors 20. A few plays later, fullback Justin Ward appeared to be headed into the end zone when the pop ball popped free and fell into the end zone. The officials ruled it was a touchback and East took over at its own 20.
After stopping a Raiders drive at the East 31, early in the fourth quarter, the Warriors went back into grind-it-out mode.
Griffith ran for about 10 yards and was hit out of bounds, moving the ball to the Raiders 27.
Cecil booted a 30-yard field goal to extend the margin to 10-0 with 6:03 left in the game.
River View went to the air to move the ball down the field and eventually scored on a Jordan Wilson’s three-yard run with 1:23 to go.
Summe picked up 20 yards on the first play after the kickoff to seal the deal.
In addition to Summe, East got 35 yards rushing on six attempts from Chase Lowman.
Lowman also had a fumble recovery.
Joseph McClanahan ran for 41 yards on seven tries for River View. Austin Walker was 6-10 passing for 55 yards.
The Warriors (4-2) visit PikeView this Friday.