Late Friday: Ashe pounds East Wilkes 39-14
by Jordan Davis
Another high scoring first half for Ashe County allowed them to cruise to a 39-14 victory over East Wilkes Friday night.
East Wilkes (0-8, 0-4 Mountain Valley Conference) gave Ashe (5-3, 4-0) a gift by fumbling the opening kickoff, making it the third straight game special teams has forced a turnover on an early kickoff. Johnathan Cox quickly turned that into six points on the next play with a 19-yard touchdown run.
The Cardinals would proceed to turn the ball over on their first four possessions, three straight fumbles and an interception. This lead to two more touchdowns by Cox. Michael Elliot also scooped one of the fumbles up and returned it 39 yards for the score.
In all, the Cardinals committed seven turnovers while the Huskies had none.
"If we don't win a game win and your plus seven in turnover margin, then we've done some pretty bad things," Ashe coach Brian Hampton said. "We capitalized early, but if they don't turn the ball over who knows what type of football game this is."
The Huskies put up 32 points before the Cardinals could answer. East Wilkes quarterbacks threw more completions to the Huskies -- three -- than their own team -- one.
"Our secondary played great. Hamilton had a couple interceptions, but he's also go to play the pitch too," Hampton said. "That's a sign of someone doing their job, staying focused in the game and not getting caught up watching the ball in the backfield. That says a lot about our defense."
So far through conference play, the Huskies have the top scoring defense in the Mountain Valley Conference with 65 points allowed through four games.
The offense is not far behind. The 142 points put up the last four games is second in the conference. The Huskies did not put up a lot of yards this week, but took advantage of the short fields the defense gave them.
Ashe quarterback Connor Bowers completed just five passes for 91 yards, but had a touchdown throw to Bradley Lucas and a screen pass to Cox that he took 40 yards for a score.
"We really didn't have a long drive," Hampton said. "Everything was inside their 30 or 40 yard line and we were able to capitalize, even though we stubbed our toe in the red zone a few times with penalties and mental mistakes."
Conference supremacy will be on the line next week at North Wilkes as the two remaining undefeated times face off.