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Lewis County tops B-U, gets back on track

by Mike Nutter

SPORTS WRITER

WESTON -- Players pumped their fists, the starters took a knee on a sideline and finally there was reason to smile.

After two heart-breaking losses in a row, Lewis County sent its old football field off in resounding style, with a 38-6 thumping over rival Buckhannon-Upshur.

The Minutemen (3-3) played their final game at Robert Bland Middle School before moving into their new facility in the 2001 season. Quarterback Patrick Morrison threw for 138 yards and one touchdown, while tailback Curtis Holden rushed for 141 yards and a pair of first half TDs on 14 carries.

However, the Lewis County offense got a shot in the arm with the return of split end Dustin Cavins.

Cavins, who sat out last week's 20-19 loss to Class AAA No. 3 University with a shoulder injury, caught three passes for 79 yards, including a 15-yard TD with :31 left before halftime. The score and Scott Bennett's PAT kick gave the Minuteman a 21-0 lead the Buccaneers (1-5) could never recover from.

"This is a good team," Cavins said. "Hopefully we can use this to help turn the season around.

"I went light this week in practice and the shoulder felt really good. It's always nice beating B-U. I think we can definitely turn it around now. Our defense really stepped up tonight, and our offense got going again."

Buckhannon-Upshur drove 54 yards on its first possession of the second half, but after 9:58 the drive stalled, and the Minutemen took over. Lewis County put the game away following a Buccaneer turnover at the B-U 49. Morrison hit Cavins with a 40-yard pass down to the 9, and three plays later, Tyler Hall took it over from the 1 for a 28-0 lead with 9:11 left to play.

"This is how it's supposed to be," Lewis County coach Eddie Williams said. "Even though we were up 21-0 at half, they still came out focused and played hard.

"Getting Cavins back and the passing game was the difference tonight. It opened up the run and helped the entire offense."

Sloan Baisden's 69-yard TD pass to Chad Winters with 3:53 remaining prevented the Minutemen shutout.

B-U's Adam Squires rushed for 97 yards.

Sports writer Mike Nutter can be reached at 626-1444 or by e-mail at sports@exponent-telegram.com.

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