After Friday’s 40-6 victory over Wheaton, the for the first time since in three years, the Clarksburg Coyotes football team has reached to five-win mark in a season.
The Coyotes jumped out in front early on a four-yard run by senior quarterback Joey Perkins, the first of his three, four-yard scoring runs in the game.
Clarksburg would add to their total on the next series on a 20-yard run by senior Ben Spiess to give the Coyotes a 14-0 lead. Less than a minute later, the Coyotes were in the end zone again. This time it was sophomore defensive back Drew Moore with a pick-six interception and return. Wheaton’s quarterback, Javari Chambers rolled out and threw a pass which Moore read and snatched out of the air at the 40-yard line, and scampered down the sideline to the end zone putting the Coyotes up 21-0 with 6:04 remaining in the first quarter of their Homecoming game.
“The difference is we’ve had the off-season to get the kids to understand what we wanted out of them, in terms of the culture,” said Head Coach Bob Plante, who is in his second year at the helm in Clarksburg. “The quality of their character is vitally important to us. We want good kids off the field and on the field. You need to show up, work hard, and do what you are supposed to do, and do it as hard as you can.”
On Wheaton’s next possession, the Coyote defense came up with a big on fourth-and-long as junior Xavier Holmes wrangled the Knights’ quarterback to the ground to force the ball to be turned over on downs.
Both teams would trade turnovers in at the beginning of the second quarter, but be unable to take advantage. Clarksburg would get the ball back on a muffed punt return when senior Toron Williams was able to fall on a ball at the Wheaton 20-yard line. The play would lead to Perkin’s second touchdown of the night, a four-yard dash to the end zone to put the Coyotes up 26-0 with 5:30 left in the first half. The teams would trade turnovers again just before the half ended.
“Joey [Perkins] drives the car of us,” said Coyotes Head Coach Bob Plante, of his senior quarterback. “That offense could be a Ferrari, or it could be a Volkswagen. He drives, and he drives it the way he wants to. He’s a great athlete. He can extend plays, and he’s a great thrower. He is a two-year starter, so he brings that experience. He gets us into the right offense and makes the right calls. He’s extremely important to us.”
Perkins would score his third touchdown, in much the same way he scored his first two — on a four-yard run to the end zone to put the home team up 33-0 with 8:50 left in the third quarter.
The Knights continued to struggle to move the ball and were forced to punt again. Clarksburg’s Drew Moore returned the punt all the way to the Wheaton 30-yard-line putting Perkins and company in good position to add to their lead. Clarksburg sored with a 13-yard-pass from Perkins to Aaron Parker to put the Coyotes up 40-0 with 3:31 remaining in the third quarter.
Wheaton would get on the scoreboard on a fourth-and-five when junior running back Wes Nchinda would scamper 35 yards to paydirt to eliminate the shutout and cut the lead to 40-6.
With five wins and three games remaining, Clarksburg has the potential to post the best record since 2008, but that will be quite the challenge, with one of the County’s better teams awaiting them at the end of the season. Next week the Coyotes will travel to 4-3 Blair for a 6:30 pm match up. The Blazers are coming off a 41-6 spanking of Springbrook last week. The Coyotes will end the season with two home games, the first against a 3-4 Einstein, and end the regular season with a tough matchup against 6-1 Paint Branch.
“These guys play as a team,” said Plante, of his Coyotes. “I have 28 seniors and juniors on this team at a 4A school which is small. I brought up five sophomores and two freshmen, so we are a young team. The guys that weren’t doing the right things are not here, but the guys that are here are guys here are the kids we are going to win with and build a program with, and I think we see that. It is a gritty bunch; I like them.”
Top: Clarksburg’s senior quarterback Joey Perkins (3) rushes to the end zone for his third touchdown of the game, as the Coyotes defeated Wheaton 40-6 to improve to 5-2 this season.
Next: Senior “Homecoming King” Ben Spiess (10) breaks tackles on his way to the score the Coyotes second touchdown of the game.
Next: Sophomore defensive back Drew Moore (4) would intercept this pass and return it 40 yards for a Clarksburg touchdown.
Next: Seniors Michael Roenick (60) and Toron Williams (8) were on the spot to recover a muffed punt return. Williams covered the ball and gave the Coyotes good field position for the next drive.
Next: Joey Perkins bulled his way into the end zone for his second touchdown of the game.
Photos by Germantown Pulse