ASHVILLE — During the tenure of coach Mark Weber, Teays Valley has been able to inscribe a number of schools onto its boom stick — signifying shutting out an opponent.
Hamilton Township was one of the rare foes who had managed to stay off the boom stick or at least that was until Friday.
The Vikings held the visiting Rangers to just five first downs and 89 yards of total offense to roll to a 42-0 Mid-State League Buckeye Division win.
“We weren’t happy with giving up 28 points (to Dunbar) last week, so we came in with a great attitude this week in practice and got after it,” Teays Valley senior Gage Weiler said. “Hamilton Township was bigger than we were, but we played faster and tougher and we kept hitting.
“We take pride in shutting out teams and this is the first time we’ve shut out Hamilton Township since we started our boom stick.”
Dale Hubbard unofficially had six sacks, as he was repeatedly in the backfield harassing Hamilton Township quarterback Brock McGuire.
“I typically play outside linebacker, but they moved me to defensive end and I really liked it, because I was able to come off the edge and get in the backfield to make a lot of plays,” Hubbard said.
It was special teams that opened the flood gates of an eventual 28-point second quarter for the Vikings.
The Vikings came after a Hamilton Township punt on fourth-and-nine from the 10-yard line and blocked it. Riely Weiss picked up the loose pigskin and went into the end zone to make it 7-0 Vikings, following the first of six extra points by Cale Clifton.
“We like scoring on special teams, although that was a little different since a lot of our special teams scores seem to come on kick returns,” Teays Valley coach Mark Weber said. “That kinda opened things up for us and our kids played with great attitude, effort and were tough.”
After the Vikings sent the Rangers backward on their ensuing possession, a 35-yard punt gave Teays Valley the ball 41 yards away from end zone.
McDanel scored two plays later on a 44-yard touchdown run to double the advantage to 14-0.
Hamilton Township was its own worst enemy in the first half with four turnovers, including three in the second quarter.
Zion Bowling ended the next Hamilton Township possession by forcing a fumble that the Vikings recovered on the HT 19-yard line.
Weiss scored two plays later on a 14-yard run to run the score to 21-0.
Weiler took his turn at forcing a fumble on the ensuing HT possession that Camden Primmer recovered on his own 47-yard line.
Weiss had carries of 30 and 10 yards on the ensuing drive that Weiler capped with a five-yard touchdown run.
The Vikings enacted the running clock in the third quarter on a 45-yard touchdown run by Weiss and McDanel capped scoring in the fourth on a 41-yard run to paydirt.
Teays Valley covered 307 yard on just 37 carries or an average of 8.3 yards per touch. Weiss consumed 157 yards on just 14 totes with two touchdowns and McDanel added 118 yards on 14 carries and two scores.
“It all starts with the offensive line and they did a nice job of controlling the line of scrimmage and opening up gaps and lanes that we could cutback in,” McDanel said.
McDanel discussed how the running styles of Weiss and himself are a perfect fit for the Vikings’ offense.
“Riely likes to get out on the edge, use his speed and make moves to get by people, while I like to run up the middle and basically truck over people,” he said. “It’s a good combination that really worked well for us against Hamilton Township.”
Both teams hit the road next week for league play, as the Vikings (5-2, 3-0) tangle with Circleville (1-6, 1-2) and the Rangers (3-4, 2-2) battle Amanda-Clearcreek (6-1, 3-0).
“It was nice to see our kids respond after the loss to Dunbar and play a cleaner game and really get after it,” Weber said. “We talked about this being a four-step process and this was only the first hurdle between us and where we want to be (winning another league championship).
“We have to keep building, keep working and keep getting better, because we have some good teams left on our schedule who are going to bring it when they face us.”