The No.5 Wheeling Park Patriots advanced to the West Virginia Class AAA state semifinals for the second time in school history with a convincing 28-7 win at No.4 Point Pleasant, handing the Big Blacks loss No.1 of the season.
The Patriots, now 11-1, advance to take on No.1 Huntington (12-0), next weekend. The Highlanders needed a late score to stave off No.8 George Washington 17-13.
Wheeling Park's super sophomores came through in a big way. Defensive back/wide receiver Elijah Bell had the game of his life, grabbing a 54-yard touchdown on the Patriots' second drive, and intercepting a pass and returning it 32 yards for a touchdown in the third quarter. Running back Savion Johnson continues to pile up monster numbers, carrying the ball 15 times for 144 yards, including an 80-yard touchdown. Johnson, the son of former Wheeling Park great Boogie Johnson, is nearing 1,500 yards rushing on the season with 18 touchdowns.
Senior quarterback Zach Phillips, the school's all-time-leading passer, completed 9-of-15 passes for 128 yards and a touchdown. Senior Geremy Paige had 22 tackles and a pair of sacks from his inside linebacker position, and rushed for a seven-yard score in the fourth quarter.
The lone Point Pleasant score was a Robert Yates 21-yard touchdown pass to Gage Buskirk. The Patriots led 14-7 at the half.
The Big Blacks season ends at 11-1.