POINT PLEASANT, W.Va. — It was definitely Homecoming.
After four straight scheduled road contests and a bye week, the Point Pleasant football team seemed all too familiar with Ohio Valley Bank Track and Field on Friday night during a 41-14 victory over visiting Man in a Week 9 non-conference matchup.
The Big Blacks (7-1) — who last played at OVB Field on Sept. 10 — was participating in just its second game in four weeks, mainly because of a regularly scheduled bye week on Oct. 1 and a forfeit win last weekend with Wyoming East due to COVID.
The hosts were more than sharp in their triumphant return home as PPHS never trailed and churned out 406 rushing yards on 46 attempts, an average of 8.8 yards per try.
More impressively, the Hillbillies (3-6) were limited to just 39 rushing yards and were outgained by a sizable 434-220 overall margin. Point Pleasant — winners of seven straight — also finished the night plus-1 in turnover differential.
The Big Blacks marched 61 yards in 10 plays on their opening drive, with Evan Roach capping things off with a 6-yard run at the 6:40 mark for a 7-0 first quarter lead.
Man received a punt on the opening play of the second quarter, then went 57 yards in eight plays as a Israel Canterbury 27-yard pass found Justin Grimmett at the 7:45 mark for a 7-all contest.
Point Pleasant needed only 63 seconds and three plays to answer as Roach capped a 65-yard drive with a 16-yard scamper for a 14-7 edge with 6:42 left in the half.
MHS turned the ball over on downs at its own 39 on the ensuing possession, and Point Pleasant capitalized with a 5-play drive that ended with a Gavin Jeffers 11-yard run for a 21-7 cushion with 1:04 remaining.
Both teams traded turnovers on the ensuing drives, which ultimately ran out the first half clock. Nathan Bentz recovered a fumble for PPHS at the Man 28 with four seconds left, then Jordan Adams picked off the desperation heave at the end of the half.
The Hillbillies put together a most-impressive 15-play, 76-yard drive to start the second half, which ended with an Israel 34-yard touchdown pass to Grimmett for a 21-14 deficit.
The drive, however, ate up over half of the third quarter clock as the TD came with 4:35 remaining. Man was also never closer the rest of the way.
PPHS countered with a 4-play, 65-yard drive that ended with a 43-yard Jeffers scamper. Elicia Wood — who converted five successful PAT kicks — had this point-after try blocked for a 27-14 edge with 2:42 showing in the third.
Trey Peck hauled in an 18-yard scoring pass from Roach with 10:26 left in regulation for a 34-14 lead, then Zander Watson added a 6-yard TD run with 5:24 left to complete the 27-point outcome.
Roach also picked off a pass on Man’s next drive, which gave Point the ball back at its own 26 with 3:47 remaining. The hosts ran six plays, picked up three first downs and watched the clock hit zeroes as they happily headed into another Homecoming weekend.
Both teams combined for 206 yards lost on 19 penalties, with MHS drawing a dozen flags for 131 yards. PPHS was penalized seven times for 75 yards.
Roach led the Point ground attack with 160 yards on 16 attempts and was also 4-of-6 passing for 28 yards that included one touchdown pass and one pick.
Jeffers was next with 103 rushing yards on 13 totes, while Brooks Pearson added 69 yards on four tries. Cody Schultz led the wideouts with two catches for 11 yards.
Grimmett paced Man with 22 rushing yards on five attempts and also led the receivers with seven catches for 97 yards. Canterbury was 15-of-22 passing for 181 yards, including two TD tosses and an interception.
Point Pleasant makes its regular season home appearance on Friday when it welcomes Ripley for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff.
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Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.