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Martinsburg uses big plays to down Hedgesville

September 23, 2000

Martinsburg uses big plays to down Hedgesville



By BOB PARASILITI / Staff Writer


MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - In a snap, Hedgesville found itself with a lead.

In two snaps, the Eagles put themselves at a disadvantage.

In three snaps, they were buried alive.

Hedgesville failed to ride the wave of a first-play touchdown as two botched punts handed Martinsburg the opening for three touchdown passes Friday leading the Bulldogs to a 22-12 victory over their crosstown rivals.

The Eagles came out and scored on a 74-yard Sean Moore-to-Devon Deeds pass-and-run on the first play from scrimmage. It ended up being the high point of the game for the Eagles.

"Big plays ... that's all I can say," said Hedgesville coach Dave Lopez. "Three touchdown passes. Their big plays killed us."

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Martinsburg (4-1) turned Hedgesville's punting problems into 10 points, resulting in a safety and 36-yard touchdown catch by Brandon Barrett from Joey Yurish for a 22-6 lead. Yurish threw for 192 yards, including touchdown passes of 17 and 42 yards to Nikolai Payne.

"We didn't play well and Hedgesville came out and played hard," Martinsburg coach David Walker said. "They came out trying to stop our run and we saw some things in the secondary. Nikolai Payne stepped up and made some big plays that he hasn't had the opportunity to make before today."

Payne's two touchdown catches gave Martinsburg a 12-6 halftime lead.

The Bulldogs took control in the second half with the help of two bad snaps on punts, resulting in Moore kicking the first out of the back of the end zone for a safety and the second turning into Barrett's fly-pattern touchdown.

David Smith bulled in for a 4-yard touchdown for Hedgesville (1-4) with 2:38 remaining in the game and the Eagles converted an ensuing onside kick to threaten, but failed. Martinsburg held Hedgesville to seven yards offense, including minus-8 yards rushing, in the second half.

"Those punts were big plays for us," Walker said. "Football is a game of mistakes. They hurt them and helped us."

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