Pierson#8217;s big plays late key Rock Hill win

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 29, 2007

PEDRO — Rock Hill coach Todd Knipp and Redmen running back Wes Pierson are on the same team, but they don’t always think alike.

Knipp was thinking one thing while Pierson was doing another. As it turned out, Knipp was happy to go with Pierson’s way of thinking as the senior running back broke a 95-yard scoring run that lifted the Redmen to a 20-6 win over the River Valley Raiders Friday.

The game was tied 6-6 with a little more than two minutes to play. Rock Hill was backed up on its own 5-yard line, so Knipp figured it was best to take a conservative approach.

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“I was thinking. ‘Let’s just get two first downs and go to overtime,” said Knipp. “We ran a play and we had all nine kids get on somebody and block and (Pierson) made a cut and off he went.

“The kids did a good job on that play. It’s the way you want a play to work with someone on everyone. You don’t have to knock them down, you just have to get on them.”

After giving the Redmen a 13-6 led, Pierson followed his long touchdown run by intercepting a River Valley pass and returning it for the clinching touchdown.

“It was one of those nights when you don’t play well but you find a way to win. The last four minutes we did play football and made some plays,” said Knipp.

Rock Hill is now 5-1 on the season and 1-0 in the Ohio Valley Conference. River Valley falls to 1-5 and 0-1.

Knipp said the Redmen did not play well for most of the night.

“We cannot keep making the mistakes we’re making and expect to win ball games. We have to eliminate penalties, shore up offensive issues, we have to sustain blocks, finish off runs and finish off tackles,” said Knipp.

The game was scoreless until the third quarter when Rock Hill put together a 66-yard, 10-play scoring drive capped by Pierson’s 6-yard run.

The conversion kick failed and it was 6-0.

River Valley came back with a scoring drive of its own that began in the third quarter and ended on the second play of the fourth quarter when xx ran 4 yards for the touchdown.

Late in the final quarter the Raiders punted and the ball rolled dead at the 5-yard line. Pierson went the distance on the next play.

The Raiders ran seven plays after the ensuing kickoff, but Pierson picked off a pass on the eighth play and returned it 69 yards for the touchdown.

The Raiders effort did not go unnoticed by Knipp.

“I give them credit. They’re a lot better football team than they get credit for,” said Knipp. “They came out and played.”

Pierson ran finished with 201 yards on 17 carries and all three touchdowns.

River Valley0006=6

Rock Hill00614=20

Third Quarter

RH — Wes Pierson 6 run (run failed)

Fourth Quarter

RV — Clayton Curnutte 4 run (kick failed)

RH — Wes Pierson 95 run (Mitchell Davenport kick)

RH — Pierson 69 interception return (Davenport kick)



First downs1518


Passing yards11247

Total yards269351






Individual Leaders

RUSHING — River Valley: Tyler Canaday 15-72, Jordan Deel 6-26, Cody McAvena 6-27, Clayton Curnutte 10-30, Ryan Henry 2-2; Rock Hill: Shane Bostic 11-55, Wes Pierson 17-201, Drew Kuehne 9-32, Andy Smith 3-12, C.J. Justice 1-3, Seth Kuehne 1-1.

PASSING — River Valley: Clayton Curnutte 7-16-0, Jordan Deel 1-8-1 12; Rock Hill: Drew Kuehne 4-11-2 47.

RECEIVING — River Valley: Zak Deel 2-18, Ryan Henry 2-21, Jordan Deel 1-17, Sean Sands 1-15, Tyler Canaday 1-17, Eric Caldwell 1-24; Rock Hill: Wes Pierson 1-15, Seth Kuehne 2-26, Mitchell Davenport 1-6.