HAMLIN, W.Va. — Picking up right where they left off.
The Point Pleasant football team started the 2014 campaign in style after picking up the program’s 15th consecutive regular season victory Friday night during a convincing 54-0 triumph over host Lincoln County in the season opener for both Class AAA programs in Lincoln County.
The visiting Big Blacks (1-0) needed less than two minutes of regulation to establish a permanent lead, as Brian Gibbs recovered a fumble in the end zone at the 10:03 mark of the opening period — giving PPHS an early 7-0 cushion.
Point Pleasant never looked back from there as the guests racked up 445 yards of total offense while establishing a 54-point lead at the end of three quarters. LCHS (0-1) finished the night with just 161 yards of total offense, most of which came after the intermission.
Cody Mitchell had three touchdown runs and Jason Wamsley added a pair of rushing TDs, while quarterback Aden Yates hit both Gage Buskirk and Jon Peterson with scoring passes in the lop-sided outcome. Point finished the night plus-3 in turnover differential and had a dozen different players contribute positive yardage to the offensive output.
PPHS churned out 326 rushing yards on 38 carries, with Mitchell leading that charge with 136 yards and three scores on 12 carries. Mitchell twice scored from a yard out and also added a three-yard scamper midway through the second quarter.
Wamsley added TD runs of 33 and seven yards, the last of which concluded the scoring at 54-0 with 1:01 remaining in the third. Wamsley finished the night with 57 yards on six totes, while Grant Safford added seven carries for 63 yards.
Yates found Buskirk on a 68-yard scoring pass with 3:52 remaining in the first half, allowing the guests to take a 33-0 edge into the break. Yates also landed a 4-yard scoring pass to Peterson with 8:03 left in the third stanza. Buskirk and Peterson ultimately led the receivers with two catches apiece for 79 yards and 28 yards, respectively.
Defensively, the Big Blacks surrendered 115 rushing yards on 25 attempts and gave up just eight first downs overall. PPHS, conversely, moved the chains on 17 different occasions.
The guests committed seven penalties for 40 yards while LCHS was flagged five times for 51 yards. Point did not attempt a single punt in the contest, compared to five for an average of 35 yards apiece for Lincoln County.
The Big Blacks return to action at 7:30 p.m. Friday night when they travel to Ripley for the annual Oak’en Bucket matchup in Jackson County.