Gipson, Murphy spark Hornets past Musketeers

Published 10:07 pm Saturday, August 19, 2023

Coal Grove Hornets’ running back Gavin Gipson (24) looks to turn the corner and head up field against the Greenup County Musketeers’ defense during Friday night’s season opener. Gipson ran for 146 yards and a touchdown while catching 2 passes for 79 yards and another score. The Hornets downed the Musketeers 36-28. (Tim Gearhart Sports Photo/For The Ironton Tribune)

For The Ironton Tribune

COAL GROVE — All it takes is a spark to start a fire.

Well, thanks to a spark from Kaden Murphy and Gavin Gipson, the Coal Grove offense ignited with a second quarter scoring flurry to help the Hornets defeat the Greenup County Musketeers 36-28 on Friday night at Lemaster Stadium Patterson Field.

Gipson finished with a team-high 146 yards rushing and a rushing score. He also hauled in two passes for 79 yards and a score.

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Meanwhile, his teammate Kaden Muprhy eclipsed the century mark, with 118 yards on the ground and a score.

“Gavin really stepped up for us and helped get us going offensively. He had a great kick return and then came out and ran the ball really hard,” said coach  Jay Lucas.

“Gavin busted a couple of big runs that really changed the momentum. Murphy came in the next drive and kept it going with another big run. Both of those guys are special young men and they compliment each other very well.”

The teams battled to a scoreless stalemate in the first quarter, thanks to tough defensive efforts from both squads.

Coal Grove’s defense would bend on Greenup County’s first offensive drive, but not break as the Musketeers would turn the ball over on downs at the Hornet 24.

But the Hornets’ first drive would come to an abrupt halt, as Greenup County defensive end Ethan Thomas would intercept a pass at the line of scrimmage and give the Musketeers the ball back at the Coal Grove 30.

However, Coal Grove’s Joe Scarberry would wrap up a scrambling Tyson Sammons on fourth down to end the Musketeers drive.

Greenup County (0-1) would break the scoreless tie on the first play of the second quarter, as Sammons would hit a wide-open Aiden Gue for a 26-yard score.

Karter Gilliam’s point after would give the Musketeers a 7-0 advantage.

Sammons would finish the night accounting for 315 of the Musketeers 386 total yards. The all-purpose quarterback would rush for 214 yards and three scores. He would also pass for 101 yards to go along with his passing score.

In need of some momentum, Hornets would get a spark.

The first one, would come from Gavin Gipson on the ensuing drive.

Gipson get things going with a 35-yard return on the kickoff and set the Hornets up at the Greenup County 48. He would then add a 33-yard burst through the Musketeers defense down to the one.

Whyatt Mannon would nose his way into the end zone on second-and-goal for the Hornet score and Gipson followed with the two-point conversion run and give Coal Grove an 8-7 lead with 8:41 remaining in the half.

Greenup County would get the ball back and respond with a long, 11-play drive to get to the Hornet 14.

But again, the Coal Grove defense would turn aside the scoring threat, stopping Sammons on fourth down as he tried to run for the first down.

Gipson would strike again on the very next play, running through a hole by his offensive line and racing 88-yards for his second score.

Murphy would score the conversion run and extend Coal Grove’s lead to 16-7.

On the Hornets’ next possession, Murphy would streak by Greenup County defenders and dash 75 yards to give Coal Grove a 22-7 halftime lead.

Coal Grove (1-0) would extend their lead to 28-7, as Gipson would score his second touchdown of the night on a 53-yard pitch-and-catch from Mannon.

But Sammons and the Musketeers would respond with three-stright scores — all three coming from runs of 35, 51 and 3 from Sammons — to tie up the game at 28-28 with 10:20 remaining in the game.

The Hornets would get the ball back and put together a vintage Coal Grove drive, covering 68-yards and running off 16-plays.

“The offensive line played well. We have some experience up front which helps throughout a game as the defense changes,” said Lucas.

“I was very proud of the and their effort.”

Fullback Kaden Turner would get the honors and plunge in from two-yards out to cap off the drive and give the Hornets the lead.

Murphy would dive-in for the conversion and a make the score 36-28 with 2:50 remaining.

Greenup County would get the ball back at their own 43 and make it to the Coal Grove 20, but Sammons’ fourth down throw would sail over his receivers head and Coal Grove would take a knee to seal the win.

“It was a great football game. I thought both teams were very physical and played really hard,” said Lucas.

The Hornets will be on the road next Friday night against the Lucasville Valley Indians.

Greenup County 0 7 14 7 = 28

Coal Grove 0 22 6 8 = 36

Second Quarter

GC — Aiden Gue 26 pass from Tyson Sammons (Karter Gilliam kick), 11:54.

CG — Whyatt Mannon 1 run (Gavin Gipson run), 8:41.

CG — Gavin Gipson 88 run (Kaden Murphy run), 1:49.

CG — Kaden Murphy 75 run (run failed), 0:42.

Third Quarter

CG — Gavin Gipson 53 pass from Whyatt Mannon (pass failed), 7:45.

GC — Tyson Sammons 35 run (Karter Gilliam kick), 6:40.

GC — Tyson Sammons 51 run (Karter Gilliam kick), 4:02.

Fourth Quarter

GC — Tyson Sammons 2 run (Karter Gilliam kick), 10:20.

CG — Kaden Turner 2 run (Kaden Murphy run), 2:50.



First downs 19 13

Rushes-yards 41-285 36-292

Passing yards 101 98

Total yards 386 390

Cmp-Att-Int 9-25-0 3-7-1

Fumbles-lost 0-0 1-1

Penalties-yards 8-50 9-61.5

Punts-average 1-40.0 2-35.5


Individual Leaders

RUSHING–Greenup County: Tyson Sammons 27-214 3TD, Ike Henderson 10-71; Coal Grove: Kaden Murphy 16-118 TD, Kaden Turner 9-29 TD, Gavin Gipson 10-146 TD, Whyatt Mannon 1-1 TD, Team 1-minus 2.

PASSING–Greenup County: Tyson Sammons 9-25-0 101 TD; Coal Grove: Whyatt Mannon 3-7-1 98 TD.

RECEIVING–Greenup County: Aiden Gue 2-33 TD, Drew Boggs 3-25, Ike Henderson 1-1; Coal Grove: Gavin Gipson 2-79 TD. Landon Roberts 1-19.