Hornets use big 2nd half rally to beat Raiders

Published 3:15 pm Saturday, September 2, 2023



ROCKSPRINGS — The famous Shootout at the O.K. Corral only lasted 30 seconds.

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The shootout at Holzer Field/Farmers Bank Stadiuml on Friday not only last the entire 48 minutes of regulation but needed overtime to settle the outcome.

When the smoke had cleared, the Coal Grove Hornets had capped a huge second half comeback and beat the Marauders 48-42 in a non-league game.

Coal Grove (3-0) fell behind 30-6 at the half before outscoring Meigs 37-12 in the second half and then getting an 11-yard touchdown run by Kaden Murphy in overtime for the win.

Murphy finished the game with 30 carries for 187 yards and he scored 3 touchdowns. The Hornets 368 total yards as they ran for 228 yards and quarterback Whyatt Mannon was 7-of-9 for 140 yards and a score. Gavin Gipson caught 4 passes for 111 yards and a TD.

Meigs (0-3) got a big offensive performance from quarterback Griffin Cleland who was 13-of-27 passing for 369 yards and 4 TDs.  Dillon Hoard had 6 catches for 234 yards and 4 TDs while Conlee Burnem had 4 grabs for 121 yards and a score.

Meigs jumped out to a 24-0 lead in the first quarter as Cleland and Howard hooked up on touchdown passes for 18, 81 and 64 yards. Cleland ran for the conversion twice and Burnem once.

Coal Grove got on the scoreboard when Murphy went 2 yards for the score with 3:47 left in the half and it was 24-6.

But Burnem caught a 76-yard TD pass from Cleveland as time ran out and it was 30-6 at the half.

The Hornets’ offense came to life in the third quarter as they outscored Meigs 23-0 to trail 30-29.

Gipson caught a 24-yard TD pass from Mannon and Murphy ran for the conversion to start the scoring and it was 30-12.

Fullback Caden Turner went 2 yards with 1:43 left in the quarter and Coal Grove was down 30-18.

Linebacker Joe Scarberry then came up with a big defensive play as he recovered a Meigs’ fumble in the end zone for a touchdown with just 17 seconds left in the quarter.

Murphy ran for the extra points and it was 30-26.

Mannon’s 1-yard keeper gave the Hornets their first lead at 34-30 at the 10:57 mark of the fourth quarter.

The Marauders answered with a 52-yard pass from Cleland to Howard  to regain the lead at 36-34.

Murphy broke free on a 33-yard scoring ru and Gipson added the conversion run for a 42-36 lead.

But Cleland ran 5 yards for the touchdown with no time on the clock to tie the game at 42. The Hornets stopped Cleland short of the end zone on the conversion run and forced overtime.

Meigs got the ball first in overtime and fumble. Murphy picked the ball in the open field but the officials blew the play dead. After a brief discussion the ball was awarded to Coal Grove.

That set the stage for Murphy to take the handoff and run up the middle through the Meigs defense and into the end zone for the winning score.

Next Friday, Coal Grove hosts South Point in the first Ohio Valley Conference game.

Coal Grove 0 6 22 14 6 = 48

Meigs      24 6 0 12 0 = 42

First Quarter

Mg — Dillon Howard 18 pass from Griffin Cleland (Griffin Cleland run) 5:42

Mg — Dillon Howard 81 pass from Griffin Cleland ((Griffin Cleland run) 2:35

Mg — Dillon Howard 64 pass from Griffin Cleland (Conlee Burnem run) 0:17

Second Quarter

CG — Kaden Murphy 2 run (run failed) 3:47

Mg — Conlee Burnem 76 pass from Griffin Cleland (run failed) 0:00

Third Quarter

CG — Gavin Gipson 24 pass from Whyatt Mannon (Kaden Murphy run)

CG — Caden Turner 2 run (run failed) 1:43

CG — Joe Scarberry fumble recovery in the end zone (Kaden Murphy run) 0:17

Fourth Quarter

CG — Whyatt Mannon 1 run (run failed) 10:57

Mg — Dillon Howard 52 pass from Griffin Cleland (run failed) 6:41

CG — Kaden Murphy 33 run (Gavin Gipson run) 2:50

Mg — Griffin Cleland 5 run (run failed) 0:00


CG — Kaden Murphy 11 run (no attempt)



First downs 12 20

Rushes-yards 49-228 169

Passing yards 140 369

Total yards 368 538

Cmp-Att-Int 7-9-0 13-27-1

Fumbles-lost 2-2 4-3

Penalties-yards 2-20 12-105


Individual Leaders

RUSHING–Coal Grove: Kaden Murphy 30-187 3-TD, Landon Roberts 3-22, Caden Turner 5-6 TD, Whyatt Mannon 10-16 TD, Gavin Gipson 1-5; Meigs: Conlee Burnem 14-116, Griffin Cleland 10-43 TD, Dillon Howard 2-15, Demetrius Tackett 2-minus 3.

PASSING–Coal Grove: Whyatt Mannon 7-9-0 140 TD; Meigs: Griffin Murphy 13-27-1 369 4-TD.

RECEIVING–Coal Grove: Gavin Gipson 4-111-TD, Kaden Murphy 2-6, Wesley Runyon 1-21; Meigs: Dillon Hoard 6-234 4-TD, Conlee Burnem 4-121 TD, Dustin Vance 2-10, Joe Metzger 1-4.