• 52°

The thrill at Rock Hill

PEDRO – Wellston scored on the second play from scrimmage Friday night, little did anyone know this was just the start of things to come.

Sunday, September 26, 1999

PEDRO – Wellston scored on the second play from scrimmage Friday night, little did anyone know this was just the start of things to come. When the dust finally settled, Rock Hill came away with a thrilling 36-35 win over the Rockets.

The Redmen recovered a Wellston fumble at the Rock Hill 3-yard line with 33 seconds left in the game.

"I’m exhausted, it doesn’t get much better than this game," Rock Hill coach Andy Hall said. "There were two keys. One, our offensive line absolutely took control of the game. The other key is how we handled adversity. We kept fighting."

Hall’s Redmen, 3-1, are off to their best start in years and are heading for Ohio Valley conference play next week starting with defending champ and undefeated Chesapeake. Wellston fell to 1-4.

Rock Hill pulled off quite a turnaround from just a year ago when Wellston won at home 66-0.

"This was sweet revenge after last year," Hall said. "I told our kids that they will remember this one for the rest of their lives. I have never been more proud of nor happier for a group of kids."

Brad Young bounced outside and turned the corner on the Redmen defense going 59 yards on the second play of the game making it 7-0 Wellston.

Rock Hill answered on its next possession with an 18-play 61-yard drive and scored when Richie Webb took a pitch out from quarterback Gabe Medinger as he was being dragged to the ground. Paul Kerns added the point after making it 7-7.

Things got wild in the second quarter. Rock Hill again went on a long march, this time 13 plays and 70 yards. Scott Turley carried the short gainer for the score making it 14-7.

A 34-yard gainer from quarterback Jawn Fortner to Shawn Brennan gave the Rockets the ball at the 1-yard line. Two plays later Young carried for his second touchdown tying the game at 14-14 with 4:03 left in the half.

The next Redmen possession typified how fast things were moving.

Turley took the ball deep into Rocket territory on a 41-yard carry putting the ball inside the 10-yard line. The play was called back on a procedure penalty.

Two plays later Erron Brennan scooped up a loose ball and took it 34 yards for the score. Again a penalty ruined another big play this time for illegal use of the hands.

No problem for the Rockets. On the next play, Fortner hit Chris Hutchinson on a timing pass down the sidelines for a 47-yard gain. Four plays later Young scored his third of four touchdowns giving the Rockets a 21-14 lead with 1:32 left in the half.

Scoring had been too easy for the Redmen to just go quietly into the locker room.

Turley picked up 13 yards and Josh Harper picked up 15 on a reverse. With 18 seconds left, Medinger hit Webb inside the 10-yard line. Webb looked to be headed out of bounds but instead spun around, broke a tackle and scored. Kevin Dilley carried for the two-point conversion giving the Redmen a 22-21 halftime lead.

Homecoming festivities did nothing to change the tone as the Redmen began the second half with a 50-yard 12 play drive that ended with a 1-yard plunge from Dilley making it 28-21.

While the Redmen were busy grinding things out, Wellston was making it look easy via the big play. On the first play following the Redmen touchdown, Brennan went untouched for a 58-yard touchdown romp. Fortner’s pass for the conversion was incomplete making it 28-27.

Turley and Webb carried the load much of the night and Webb finished off another long drive with a score from a yard out with 3:55 left in the third quarter. Klaiber hit Webb for the two-point conversion making it 36-27.

Rock Hill had scored on every possession except for a fumble at the end of the first half. They would not score again.

Wellston scored with 10:01 left in the game when Young carried in from three yards out. Fortner bootlegged in the conversion cutting the lead to 36-35.

Wellston came up empty on its next drive giving the Redmen the ball with 3:09 left. Two plays later Medinger could not get a handle on the snap and Troy Meade recovered the fumble for the Rockets at their own 45-yard line with 2:21 left.

The Rockets chewed up yardage and clock and they took the ball to the 9-yard line with 39 seconds left. Young looked to be headed for his fifth touchdown and a game winning score when he fumbled at the 3-yard line and Rock Hills Nick Ferrell fell on the loose ball preserving the win.

Turley led the Redmen with 108 yards on 17 carries and Webb had 89 yards on 21 attempts.

Young led all rushers with 168 yards on 26 carries and Hutchinson had 95 yards on 17 tries.