By Cody Shook, Sports Editor
The first quarter went back and forth with long drives by the Hilltoppers and the Pioneers, but neither team was able to find the end zone.
In the second quarter, the Pioneers got on the board first with a touchdown pass from quarterback Jaylen McNair to wide receiver Kentre’ Grier from three yards out to go up 7-0, after the made point attempt after by kicker Kelvin Flores.
Junior quarterback Brenton Colabella got the Hilltoppers offense going late in the second quarter, with a long drive that was capped off by a touchdown pass to wide receiver Ian Kelly from the one yard line. The Hilltoppers tied it up at seven after the made point after attempt by Christian Morris.
On the ensuing drive, the Pioneers drove down the field with the remaining 39 seconds left in the half to nail a 44-yard field goal to go ahead of the Hilltoppers 10-7.
The Hilltoppers got the ball first to the start the second half, but the drive ended in an interception. However, after three straight Pioneer penalties that pinned them deep in their own territory, they were forced to punt it away from their own five yard line which gave the Hilltoppers field position around mid-field. The Hilltoppers made the most of it by driving down the field and ending up getting three points after a field goal by Morris to tie the game up at ten with under eight minutes left in the third quarter.
The Pioneers were plagued by penalties all quarter, which stalled all of their offensive drives and even hurt them on defense to help the Hilltoppers drive down the field.
To finish the third quarter, the Hilltoppers drove down the field and Kelly reception to take West Liberty down to the seven yard line as the third quarter clock expired; Morris knocked a 24-yard field goal through to give the Hilltoppers their first lead of the game 13-10, with 14:56 left in the fourth quarter.
The Hilltoppers had one promising drive late in the game, but a personal foul on the West Liberty sideline caused a long fourth down try then ended unsuccessfully. With less than 90 seconds left in the game, Thomas Boles for the Pioneers busted out a 34-yard run to put the game on ice and give Glenville State the 17-13 victory.
The Hilltoppers will be back in action next Saturday when they travel to West Virginia State to take on the Yellow Jackets at 1 p.m. Be sure to grab this week’s issue of the Trumpet for a game preview and player profiles.
Photo credit: Cody Shook, Ana Berbel