By Gaylen Duskey By Gaylen Duskey

Calhoun discovered its offense and a 66-yard kickoff return touchdown by Zack Yanero lifted the Red Devils to a 26-24 victory over Ritchie County Friday night at Ellenboro.

Yanero, a senior basketball standout, scored with 4:38 remaining to answer a Ritchie touchdown to give Calhoun, 1-3, its first win of the season while keeping the Rebels, 0-4, winless.

Yanero's score was the final and deciding points in what had been a seesaw game.

Ritchie started out on top slowly.

The Rebels took a 2-0 first quarter lead on a safety when Calhoun was whistled for a penalty on a play in the end zone.

However, despite giving Ritchie a short field to work on with the penalty kick following the safety, the Red Devils defense held strong and kept the Rebels off the board the rest of the quarter.

The Rebels got got the ball back and this time scored when Zack Utter found the end zone from 19 yards out. The Rebels' extra point attempt failed but Ritchie was on top 8-0.

Calhoun got its offense clicking and scored just its third touchdown of the season when Seth Moore scored from eight yards out with 5:24 remaining in the half. The Red Devils also failed on the extra point attempt leaving Ritchie on top 8-6 at intermission.

Early in the game Calhoun's offense had been stymied by several procedure penalties. Overall, Calhoun was penalized 11 times for 76 yards in the game.

Ritchie regained the lead late in the third quarter when Travis Pickering caught a 17-yard touchdown pass from Tatem McCloy. Garrett Owens scored the extra points and Ritchie led 16-6.

But Calhoun rallied.

First Dylan Heiney scored on a 25-yard run to make it 16-12. The Red Devils took the lead early in the fourth when Heiney scored again, this time from a yard out. Heiney hit Yanero for the extra points to give Calhoun a 20-16 lead.

But Ritchie was not to be denied and the Rebels regained the lead 24-20 when Owens scored on a six yard run.

But on the ensuing kickoff Yanero took over and gave Calhoun the lead for good 26-24 for good as Calhoun's defense held steady. Overall, Calhoun held Ritchie to 244 yards total offense, Calhoun had only 202 yards offense but it was a big improvement over the 97 the Red Devils had against Doddridge.

Nick Murphy led the Red Devils offense with 110 yards on 10 carries. Heiney had 52 on 13 carries, Moore added 37 on 10 attempts and Noah Allen had five on two attempts. The Red Devils completed only one pass and it went to Yanero for five yards.

Calhoun returns to action Friday night when it entertains Tyler Consolidated. Tyler Consolidated had been ranked 15th in Class A prior to its loss to Ravenswood which dropped it to 2-2. Ritchie County also plays on Friday when it is home to Doddridge County.

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