Big plays help Ashe beat Alleghany 55-19

By Nathan Ham -

Matt Greer catches a pass out of the backfield in Friday’s game against Alleghany.

Nathan Ham | Jefferson Post

WEST JEFFERSON — Senior quarterback Colin Ellis threw six touchdown passes and ran for one more in the Huskies’ dominating victory over Alleghany on Friday night.

Four of those touchdown passes were 35 yards or longer as the Ashe passing attack was on point all night long.

It took the Huskies just 33 seconds into the game to score their first touchdown of the night. Ellis fired a 36-yard TD to senior wideout Dante Shuler to give Ashe a 6-0 lead.

After a punt by the Trojans, Ashe marched down the field and scored on the ground. Ellis cut through the Alleghany defense for a 21-yard TD run and a 14-0 lead after the Huskies completed a two-point conversion.

On the very next series, Alleghany fumbled the ball and Husky linebacker Sam Henson was right there for the recovery with 4:15 left in the first.

Ashe capitalized on the turnover in under a minute. Ellis found senior wideout Judd Price streaking across the middle of the field for a 41-yard touchdown and a 20-0 lead.

The Huskies had one more first quarter touchdown in them. After a Trojan punt, it took just one play to score. Ellis fired a 76-yard strike to Shuler for his second TD reception of the night. Ashe took a 27-0 lead after the first period of play.

Junior Grant Thompson took over the game for the next few minutes of play. Thompson intercepted a pass from Alleghany quarterback Brett Pope late in the first quarter.

On the first play of the second quarter, Ellis found Thompson wide open for a 12-yard score, adding on to the big Husky lead at 34-0.

The Trojans finally found some success on the ground and got on the board. Kaleb Redd capped off a nearly five-minute scoring drive with a one-yard touchdown run with 7:09 left in the second quarter.

Ashe quickly got back to its scoring ways with two more air strikes in the final seven minutes. Just 18 seconds after Alleghany’s score, Ashe answered with a 59-yard pass from Ellis to Price.

The Huskies’ final score of the second period came with 2:41 left until the half. Ellis hit Shuler in stride for a 35-yard TD and a 49-7 lead at the half.

Thompson added his second interception of the game in the closing seconds of the half.

The second half was much shorter thanks to the running clock that was instituted after halftime with the Huskies holding a 42-point lead.

Alleghany scored on a 34-yard run from Tristen Villarruel with 5:23 left in the third.

In the fourth quarter, Ashe’s Dylan Little recovered a fumble, setting up Ashe’s final score of the night. Thompson took over at quarterback and was able to throw a TD pass to Shuler with 3:57 left to play. That play was Shuler’s fourth touchdown of the night.

The Trojans added one last score on the final play of the game, a 45-yard pass from Pope to Villarruel.

Ashe now sits at 2-3 overall and 1-0 in the Mountain Valley Athletic Conference.

For Alleghany, this was their first loss of the season, dropping them to 4-1 overall and 0-1 in the MVAC.

“We played well tonight, we did some good things. Defensively, I thought we really improved,” said Ashe County head coach Brian Hampton. “It pays to play good people. That’s the reason we played the non-conference schedule we did was to prepare us for our conference schedule. I think this ought to give us a little confidence going into next week and we’ve got to build on this and just keep going.”

Offensively, Ashe has had no problem moving the ball all season long, but the Huskies have had to deal with drives stalling out and turnovers. Tonight, however, was a different story with no interceptions thrown and the Huskies able to find the end zone on eight drives.

On the defensive side of the ball, the Huskies limited almost everything that Alleghany tried to do.

“We played well up front. Dylan Little will not show up in the stats as having many tackles, but Dylan Little is the reason that that defense worked tonight. They (Alleghany) were having to block him with two, sometimes three guys which freed up our linebackers to make plays,” said Hampton.

Hampton said that one thing the team will work on is the play of the secondary to get ready for a big matchup with Wilkes Central.

“Next week will be a little tougher competition in the secondary,” he said. “Alleghany’s got a great running game, they’re big up front, but Wilkes Central will spread us out and throw it around a little more.”

Area scores

Avery County 34, Charles D. Owen 20

Bishop McGuinness 42, North Stokes 0

East Surry 41, Atkins 6

East Wilkes 28, North Wilkes 7

Forbush 42, Cherryville 14

Hendersonville 42, Mountain Heritage 22

Hibriten 61, South Caldwell 0

Maiden 60, Bunker Hill 7

North Rowan 32, West Stokes 7

South Iredell 55, Alexander Central 27

Starmount 40, Elkin 20

Surry Central 14, Salisbury 12

Watauga 56, St. Stephens 12

West Caldwell 14, Newton-Conover 12

West Stanly 27, North Surry 14

Wilkes Central 23, West Wilkes 21

Nathan Ham can be reached at 336-489-3062.

Matt Greer catches a pass out of the backfield in Friday’s game against Alleghany. Greer catches a pass out of the backfield in Friday’s game against Alleghany. Nathan Ham | Jefferson Post

By Nathan Ham

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