LOG MOUNTAIN —It was Skyler Griffith early and Corey Shelton late as both Williamsburg receivers caught two touchdown passes and returned interceptions for touchdowns in the Yellow Jackets’ 70-22 win over Pineville in the first game of the City/County Bowl Friday.
The Lions were done in by four turnovers, three of which were returned for touchdowns.
“Our kids for the most part fought hard. That is a really, really good football team that we played,” Pineville coach Bart Elam said. “We played toe-to-toe with them in the first half. They just hit some big plays after the half that hurt us and we weren’t able to overcome them.”
Williamsburg got on the board quickly as Dalton Sizemore hooked up with Griffith on a 21-yard touchdown pass and then hit Shelton for the conversion and it was 8-0 with 9:26 to go in the first quarter.
Griffith then came away with a tipped ball and returned the interception 23 yards to make it 14-0 less than a minute later.
The next Mountain Lion drive also ended in disaster as Chase Lowrie scooped up a backward lateral and returned it 27 yards for another quick touchdown. Griffith’s 11-yard touchdown reception pushed the lead to 28-0 with 4:49 to play in the first quarter.
Though they were down big, the Lions didn’t give up. They made their first defensive stop, then picked up their first first down when the Jackets jumped off sides on a 4th and short play. From there Pineville took off.
Senior quarterback Jamie Roan hooked up with Connor Ford for a 47-yard gain down to the Williamsburg 11. Roan ran it in from there to get the Lions on the board. A pass from Ford to Byron Asher made it 28-8 with 25.7 seconds left in the first quarter.
Pineville then sent a squib kick down the middle and a big hit from Asher popped the ball into the air where Matt Hubbard came down with it.
One play later Roan hit Jared Philpot in stride down the left sideline for a 41-yard touchdown play and Ford’s conversion run brought the Lions within 28-16 with 3.1 seconds on the first quarter clock.
Griffith returned the following kick 74 yards for a touchdown and Williamsburg took a 36-16 lead into the second quarter.
Pineville controled the ball for most of the period. They had a six-yard Andrew Douglas touchdown run called back on a holding call and wound up turning the ball over on downs. But Tanner Mike intercepted Sizemore on the following drive and set the Lions up at the Williamsburg 17. On 4th and 11, Roan hit Mike from 18-yards out. The conversion run failed, but Pineville was within 36-22 with 3:44 to play in the half and that would be the halftime score.
“Wiliamsburg’s got a really, really good football team. If you shoot yourself in the foot, then you put yourself in a hole that you can’t dig out of,” Elam said.
That would prove to be the case. The Lions went three-and-out on the opening possession of the third quarter and Williamsburg took over at the Lion 43.
Eight plays later Sizemore scored on a two-yard run and then hit Griffith for the conversion and a 44-22 lead.
Pineville’s Ford was injured on the Williamsburg drive and left the field in an ambulance. Elam said after the game that it was mostly precautionary as Ford had movement in his arms and legs and probably only suffered a severe stinger.
Another tipped pass was picked off by Shelton and he returned it 56 yards for a TD to extend the lead to 50-22.
The Jackets weren’t satisfied with the big lead and Sizemore stayed in the game to hit Shelton with a touchdown passes from 29 and 24 yards out to make it 64-22 by the end of the third quarter.
“We played a real good first half, other than the first three or four minutes,” Elam said. “Then in the third quarter our offense kind of put our defense in some bad situations.”
Williamsburg capped the scoring with a 36-yard Logan Hamblin run with 7:48 to play.
Sizemore finished 16-of-23 passing for 266 yards and four touchdowns with one interception.
Shelton was named the Yellow Jacket offensive player of the game with five catches for 112 yards and two TDs. Griffith added four catches for 48 yards and two scores. Jeffereson Patrick was the Williamsburg defensive player of the game.
Mike led the Lions with 35 rushing yards on seven carries. He also had three catches for 28 yards and a touchdown and was named the Pineville offensive player of the game. Roan threw for 120 yards and two touchdowns and added that 11-yard score. Dalton Ledbetter was the Mountain Lion defensive player of the game.
Pineville (1-2) hosts Lynn Camp next Friday while Williamsburg (3-0) hosts Leslie County.