ELLENBORO, W.Va. – Ritchie County punched its ticket to the state championship game in Wheeling for the first time in school history after a 20-16 win over Wheeling Central Catholic.
The first half was a true defensive battle and the teams went into the locker room tied at 0.
It was the Maroon Knights who scored first. In the third quarter, Michael Toepher sent a 27 yard strike to Lorenzo Ferrera in stride. They went for two and led 8-0.
Ritchie County answered that as Ethan Haught launched a 56 yard bomb caught by Marlon Moore. The Rebels’ two point conversion failed and they trailed 8-6.
The Rebels gained momentum after that. Haught send a short pass to Gus Morrison who turned it into a 60 yard touchdown play. Ritchie took a 12-8 lead.
Then Seth Hardy hit the ground running for the Rebels’ third unanswered touchdown and the 18-8 lead.
Wheeling didn’t go down without a fight Fererra scored once more to make it a two point game.
But a late safety by Garrett Cunningham sealed the deal for the Rebels.
Rick Haught’s crew heads to Wheeling where they see No. 6 Williamstown.