Wolverines knock off Warriors

Sherando junior linebacker Dylan Rivers verbally committed to play football at Penn State in November. The junior had 14 Division I offers. Rich Cooley/Daily file

STEPHENS CITY – Woodgrove High School hit a few explosive plays Friday night and ended Sherando’s football season.

Woodgrove, of Purcellville, got the key plays at the right time for a 35-21 Group 4A playoff win over Sherando.

The Warriors were also hurt by penalties. They had 10 for 85 yards, including one that negated a touchdown in the first quarter.

“To come here and beat these guys on their football field – they’re a helluva team,” Woodgrove coach Mike Skinner said. “(Sherando coach) Bill (Hall) does a great job great. It was a great effort by our kids.”

The Wolverines overcame a failed fake punt in the second quarter. On fourth-and-1 from the Woodgrove 11, the Wolverines tried a fake punt but the snap sailed over the head of Charlie Clewis and Sherando’s Tyler Tinsman fell on the ball for a 7-0 lead with 11:54 left in the first half.

Sherando's Mitchell Shiley leaps over Woodgrove's Cole Rosick while getting a block by teammate Dylan Rivers forcing Ross Vaughn out of the play during first quarter playoff action Friday night in Stephens City. Rich Cooley/Daily

“They snapped it to (Clewis) and it went over his head,” Tinsman said. “He was bending down to get it, and I kind of hit it forward to get it away from him and fell on top of it in the end zone.”

The Wolverines tied the game at 7-7 on a five-play 77-yard drive. On third-and-10 from the Sherando 38, Woodgrove quarterback Mike Kovich kept the ball and raced to the end zone for the score.

Woodgrove added to the lead late in the first half. Kovich connected with Mason Gryniuk for a 3-yard touchdown pass for a 14-7 lead with 12 seconds left in the half.

The Wolverines extended the lead to 21-7 on an 84-yard punt return by Cole Rosick with 9:33 left in the third quarter.

Sherando responded with a 23-yard touchdown pass from pat Minteer to DJ Myers with 7:27 left in the third quarter.

Sherando quarterback Patrick Minteer finds a huge hole to run through during first quarter action against Woodgrove on Friday in Stephens City. Rich Cooley/Daily

Early in the fourth quarter, the Wolverines scored again on a 23-yard touchdown pass from Kovich to Mikey Bryant.

Again the Warriors cut the lead to seven on a 57-yard pass from Minteer to Rivers.

“We got the situation with one corner playing two different people,” Minteer said. “… Good thing Dylan opened it up quickly that I could get the ball away before I got hit.”

The Warriors struggled throughout the game containing the defensive pressure from Woodgrove. The Warriors were unable to move the ball on their next possession.

“They play man and it allows them to put so many people in the box,” Hall said. “It puts so much pressure on you. They did a good job. It was two physical teams going at it. They did a good job.”

Sherando's David Eppard dives to tackle Woodgrove's Mike Bryant during second quarter playoff action on Friday night in Stephens City. Rich Cooley/Daily

The Warriors’ defense stepped up and forced Woodgrove into a fourth-and-1 from the Woodgrove 44. The Wolverines decided to go for it, and Sherando blitzed. Kovich was able to slip through the line and race to the end zone for a 35-21 lead with just 2:04 left.

“We play to win. We tell our kids we play to win,” Skinner said. “They had a little momentum I thought. We were a little tried. I thought what the (heck), we get a first down, we win.”

Despite the loss, the Warriors had a very strong season.

“It was great,” Tinsman said. “We went 9-2. I don’t think anybody thought we were going to go 9-1 in the regular season, playing Martinsburg, Fort Hill and all these other teams. I’m proud of everybody. It’s just hard to see it end.”

Contact staff writer Tommy Keeler at 540-465-5137 ext. 168, or tkeeler@nvdaily.com

Wolverines 35, Warriors 21
Woodgrove 0 14 7 14–35
Sherando 0 7 7 7–21
Second quarter
S: Tinsman fumble recovery in end zone, (Sites kick), 11:54
W: Kovich 39 run (Gieseman kick), 10:01
W: Gryniuk 2 pass from Kovich (Gieseman kick), :19
Third quarter
W: Williams 84 punt return (Gieseman kick), 9:37
S: Myers 23 pass from Minteer (Sites kick), 7:27
Fourth quarter
W: Bryant 23 pass from Kovich (Gieseman kick), 10:08
S: Rivers 56 pass from Minteer (Sites kick), 7:47
W: Kovich 56 run (Gieseman kick), 2:04
First downs 11 12
Rushes-yards 33-179 34-79
Passing yards 101 182
Passing 13-22-2-0 15-22-2-2
Penalties-yards 5-45 10-85
Fumbles-lost 1-1 0-0
Punts-Avg. 7-22.9 5-32.8
RUSHING: Woodgrove Kovich 14-141, Clewis 12-39, Bryant 4-7, Kpaduwa 3-(-8), Sherando Myers 21-77, Peterson 4-8, Rivers 3-4, Shiley 1-2, Minteer 5-(-12).
PASSINg: Woodgrove Kovich 13-22-101-2-0. Sherando Minteer 15-22-182-2-2.
RECEIVING: Woodgrove Bryant 6-47, Rosick 1-26, Williams 4-23, Gryniuk 2-5. Sherando Rivers 4-78, Myers 5-40, Shiley 2-24, Hayes 1-17, Perry 1-11, Tinsman 1-10, Peterson 1-2.

Sherando's Daryl Myers returns this second quarter kickoff for yardage during Friday's playoff game with Woodgrove. Rich Cooley/Daily

Sherando's Joseph Doleman eyes a loose ball in the first quarter of the Warriors' Group 4A playoff game against Woodgrove on Nov. 20. Sherando could be moving up to Group 5A starting in the fall of 2017. Rich Cooley/Daily file

Sherando head football coach Bill Hall grimaces as he trots off the field after a timeout during his team's game on Friday against Woodgrove. Woodgrove beat Sherando 35-21. Rich Cooley/Daily