Red Devils head to Williamstown in search of first 2021 victory

Mark Martin
Special to Jackson Newspapers

Ravenswood faced off with one of the Little Kanawha Conference’s finest programs Friday, Sept. 3.

Now, the Devils flip the page to meet another of the league’s very best.

After owning a halftime lead of 14-9 with St. Marys, the defending Class A state champs, Ravenswood watched the Blue Devils pull away in the second half and leave with a 30-14 victory.

At one point in the contest, Ravenswood was ahead by a count of 14-2.

It's a loss leaving Ravenswood at 0-2 in the young season.

The Williamstown Yellowjackets, another program with a state champion pedigree at the Class A level, will be the next challenge for Eric Hupp’s crew.

Williamstown opened its season with a loss to Waterford, Ohio, (18-12) before rebounding with a win over Warren Local, Ohio, (34-6) the week of Aug. 29-Sept. 4.

The St. Marys loss by Ravenswood followed a defeat at the hands of Magnolia in the opener.

Ravenswood hits the road for the second time this season with the short jaunt to Williamstown.

“Our kids played a great first half against St. Marys. We played assignment football,” said fourth-year head coach Eric Hupp.

Fourth-year head coach Eric Hupp and his football crew will journey to Williamstown in search of a win.

St. Marys came out in the second half and took control.

“The counter stuff started working for them. It made for a rough second half,” said Hupp.

Going against the Yellowjackets will be no easy task, but Hupp knows his team will be up to the challenge.

“Williamstown is a year-in and year-out consistent team,” said Hupp. “It seems as though they never go through a rebuild but just reload. They have another good team.”

Several things jump out at Hupp as his team gets set for the third game of the season.

At the top of the list is Yellowjacket quarterback Maxwell Molessa.

“He’s really a great quarterback,” Hupp said. “He does a great job of throwing the ball and running the offense. He does a great job of reading defenses.”

A 0-2 start is not how any coach wants to begin a season, but Hupp saw some things to hold onto from both games that can still take his team to where it wants to go in 2021.

“We cleaned up the turnovers from the Magnolia game. Our defense played a great game in the first half and we’ve done some things offensively,” he said. “We just need to get more consistent with the things we are doing. We’ve played two pretty good teams out of the gate and we have another one. We were ahead of St. Marys 14-2, we just need to learn how to close the deal.

“Each week our kids just need to know it’s a grind-it-out game. They just have to have the mindset to play those kind of games.”

Red Devil game notes

Williamstown leads the overall series with Ravenswood, 25-13-1.

Williamstown has reached the playoffs 22 straight years.

Last season, the Yellowjackets finished 5-3 and earned a postseason berth in Class A but was unable to play due to COVID-19.

Williamstown’s rich football history includes a Kennedy Award winner in Rick Petty, who won the state’s top football player award in 1970.

After several great years running the program, Terry Smith retired after the 2019 campaign.

Chris Beck is now in his second season at the helm.

Williamstown is coming off a Class AA boys state basketball championship, defeating Poca.

The game with Ravenswood and Williamstown will air live on WMOV-AM/FM (1360/106.5) with Heath Bloxton and Jared Bloxton.