WEIRTON – The Weir seniors put the final stamp of approval on a successful four-year career on the hill.
The Red Riders took care of business, defeating Brooke 24-10 on senior night to finish the regular season 9-1.
Now he can rest, recover, and prepare for the playoffs, which take place in 13 days. The important thing is that the first game and possibly the second game, after Weir advances, will be played on the home field at Jimmy Carey Stadium.
“These seniors played their hearts out on senior night and that’s why, because we’ve never played the last game on top of the mountain. The last time was at Jimmy Carey’s downtown,” said Weir head coach Frank Sisinni. “We get it, which was our goal and we’re in a great position and we’re playing Weir High football.”
Weir High football on Friday night was able to rely on their senior quarterback to make big plays – and they did.
Brooke started taking out the Riders’ lead early in the game, and it worked. Lyons was limited to 35 yards on 15 carries and more than half of those came in the second half.
In short, Brooke was under a lot of pressure with his forehand skills and outclassed Weir’s speedster. It didn’t matter.
Malachi Stromile wants his team to win, no matter what.
In the first quarter, Stromile made a pass to Lyons, kept the ball and went 44 yards for the first score.
He later caught two touchdowns that covered 31 and 11 yards, respectively—both in the soft hands of G. Cross, who finished with 102 yards on six receptions.
Whenever Weir needed a big play, Stromile was there.
“The story has been there all this time,” Sisinni said. “We’ve had a lot of naysayers try to take Corey away from our running game, but what they see is we have a good player and a dangerous skill.
“He’s done really well this year, especially in the big games.”
Friday’s game was really big, and Stromile’s heroics mattered.
After falling behind early 6-0, Brooke regained control of the game.
The Bruins started a seven-play, 66-yard drive primarily by Gavin Moore. Moore logged several 10-plus yard drives, capped by his 15-yard touchdown run with 1:37 left in halftime.
The successful PAT kick put Brooke up 7-6 at halftime.
In the second half, Moore nearly broke off a long touchdown on a short pass from freshman Ty Sperringer that covered 45 yards down the field inside the five.
What’s next for that car? Zero points. Penalties and a blown play pushed the ball back and Chase Hile, who later hit a 39-yard field goal, missed a 29-yarder. What started as a scoring opportunity led to a zero, and a big drive moved to Weir’s side of the field.
“We had a good thing happen in the first half and when we were able to make a run in the second (half), we executed a couple of drives and shot some great opportunities,” Brooke head coach Mac McLean said.
“When you play good teams, you can’t make a mistake like this.”
Stromile and Cross connected on goals in the third and fourth quarters.
By the time Hile hit a 29-yarder, the Bruins trailed 18-10 with 6:37 to go.
Weir drove down the field and scored a late TD on a 13-yard pass by Stromile for a 24-10 lead.
“I said before the game that big play was going to be the difference,” McLean said. “Weir were almost four better than we were. We fought back but we got to the goal and shot ourselves in the foot. We needed seven.
“Praise Frank and Weir. They have a great team and good things going on and I wish them the best. This may sound strange for Brooke’s coach, but I hope they win everything.”
Stromile finished with 141 yards passing and 145 rushing, accounting for four TDs overall.
Moore led Brooke with 124 rushing yards, adding two catches for 55 as a receiver.