ASHTON, W.Va. — It almost took the entire 48 minutes of regulation, but visiting Montcalm finally gained some late breathing room against Hannan Friday night en route to a 15-0 non-conference victory in a Week 10 gridiron matchup in Mason County.
The visiting Generals (3-7) came away with a safety in the opening five minutes of regulation, then made that 2-0 advantage hold up until midway through the second half after scoring the first touchdown of the game with 14 seconds left in the third period.
The Wildcats (1-8) followed with a 15-play, 79-yard drive that set up a third-and-goal at the MHS one, but the hosts fumbled on their 15th play — allowing the Generals to hold on to their one-possession 8-0 advantage with 7:50 left in regulation.
Hannan’s defense held on the ensuing possession, but its offense stalled on the next drive — which resulted in a loss of downs. Montcalm took over possession at its own 48 with 2:27 left in the fourth.
MHS whittled away at the clock, then capped a six-play, 52-yard drive in style following a 16-yard scoring run from Dakota Lanter that gave the guests a 14-0 cushion with just 9.3 seconds left in the contest. Travis Poynter tacked on the extra-point kick to wrap up the 15-point decision.
The Generals outgained HHS 203-121 in total offensive yardage and claimed an 11-8 edge in first downs despite not completing a single pass in seven attempts. Montcalm went the entire game without a giveaway and also finished the night plus-4 in turnover differential after forcing three fumbles and an interception after halftime.
Offense was a major challenge for the Wildcats most of the night, as the hosts punted on five of their six possessions in the first half. HHS — which had its other offensive possession end with a safety — mustered only 41 yards on 23 offensive plays before the break.
In fact, only three of Hannan’s 48 plays resulted in gains of double-digit yardage — and two of those came on the drive that ended with a fumble in the finale. Montcalm, conversely, had nine offensive plays that resulted in gains of 10-or-more yards — including both second half touchdowns.
Both teams traded punts on their opening possessions, with the Wildcats taking over possession at their own two-yard line with 7:56 left in the opening period. Hannan executed two consecutive run plays that lost a yard apiece, the last of which resulted in a safety after Matt Wallace was tackled in the end zone by Montcalm’s Dakota Conley.
That tackle for loss gave the guests a 2-0 advantage with 7:03 left in the first quarter, which is where the score stood entering the intermission.
After forcing a punt on the opening drive of the second half, Hannan took over possession at its own 16 with 7:50 left in the third. HHS marched out to the 22, but then lost a fumble on a third-and-four play — giving the Generals possession at the 27 with 6:12 left in the stanza.
Montcalm’s offense stalled, as the guests lost possession on downs after going backwards to the HHS 31. Hannan followed by throwing an interception on the third play of the ensuing drive — which eventually led to disaster.
With 1:55 left in the quarter and possession at the Hannan 36, Montcalm marched 36 yards in four plays for the first touchdown of the night — an 11-yard scamper by Colton Egnor for an 8-0 edge with 13.9 seconds left in the third.
Four of the Wildcats’ five possessions in the second half resulted in turnovers, and the fifth drive ended in a loss of downs at the MHS 48 with 2:27 left in regulation. The Generals followed with their second scoring drive of the night to put the proverbial nail in the coffin.
Hannan accumulated 104 rushing yards on 33 carries, while the guests amassed all of their 203 yards on 44 rushing attempts. HHS was penalized nine times for 69 yards, while the guests were flagged 11 times for 85 yards.
Wallace led the Wildcats with 56 rushing yards on 14 totes, followed by Zac Camp with 49 yards on 12 carries. Charles Mayes also had five rushing yards on four tries.
Adam Wilson finished the night 6-of-15 passing for 17 yards, which included zero touchdowns and one interception. Wallace led the wideouts with four catches for nine yards, while Mayes and Camp respectively had five yards and three yards on a catch apiece.
Dakota Lanter led the Generals with 100 rushing yards on 14 carries, followed by Colton Egnor with 55 yards on 13 attempts. Jason Grose also chipped in 40 rushing yards on 12 totes for the victors.
Lanter was 0-for-6 passing and Grose was 0-for-1 through the air. Lanter also had the game’s lone interception.
Hannan completes its 2013 regular season next Saturday when it hosts Hundred in a Week 11 non-conference matchup at 6 p.m.