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Wildcats dominate outmanned Jackets

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By Preston Knight - pknight@nvdaily.com

FRONT ROYAL -- Fool them twice, and it was shame on the Yellow Jackets.

A pair of inside handoffs to Robert Canby that went for touchdown runs in the first quarter set the tone Friday night as Warren County cruised to a 55-3 victory against Moorefield (W.Va.).

Canby, a senior running back, scored from 64 and 21 yards out in the opening 10 minutes, getting the ball from quarterback Tyler Post after a fake pitch to normal workhorse back Gage Steele.

"I'd probably chase 33 [Steele's number], too," Wildcats coach Tony Tallent said. "Robert Canby is a really good running back."

Steele got his yards, too, tallying 59 yards on six carries, two of them for scores. He also had two touchdowns called back on penalties.

The biggest gainer, however, was senior Quail Robinson, who dazzled with an 83-yard score in the second quarter when he juked a Yellow Jackets defender around the Moorefield 30-yard line and finished the long run to make it 33-3. It was around that point in the run when he tired, he said.

"Just good blocking on that play," said Robinson, who finished with 150 yards, including two touchdowns, on three carries.

The Wildcats (4-0) racked up more than 400 yards rushing and 550 yards overall. They scored on every first-half possession except their last, when a 34-yard field goal attempt was blocked on the final play. They led 40-3 at intermission.

Post threw for two touchdowns in the second quarter, connecting with Damien Wright for 65 yards and Chris Larsen for 36. On the strike to Wright, the receiver was tackled as he crossed the goal line. Post finished with 159 yards, completing 4-of-6 passes.

Moorefield (3-2) started the game with three straight plays that went for first downs, all involving senior fullback Louis Richardson. He finished with 130 yards on 18 carries.

But the Yellow Jackets, despite running for 227 yards, were never able to sustain a drive long enough to get into the end zone. They lost a fumble and had two interceptions, one by Post. On the final play of the game, running back Tyhiem Franklin was stopped inches from scoring.

Tallent said he prepared his team to face a big Moorefield squad. Steele said it was a chance for the Wildcats to prove to themselves, and others, what they were all about.

"We had to come out and play [hard]," he said.

In their first four games, the Wildcats have now outscored their opponents 159-9. Tallent said he's proud of the program that the school is building, noting that an eighth of it is now playing football. Just as important, he has the personnel to do multiple things.

"We're not a one-dimensional team," Tallent said.

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