Knights wrap up season with impressive win, Beltner praises team


PHILIPPI—The Taylor County Middle School (TCMS) Knights football team traveled to Philippi Middle School to face the Bulldogs for their final matchup of the regular season.

The Knights put on a dazzling display as they defeated the Bulldogs 41-6 to end their season on a high note. The Knights wrap up the year with an impressive 6-2 overall record.

The four starting running backs for the TCMS Knights contributed over 260 yards and six combined touchdowns, while kicker Stratten Wooddell crossed the uprights for three additional extra-point kicks.

In an impressive move, Wooddell scored a touchdown, and then went on to kick his own extra point.

Kaden Keener led the defense with nine tackles.

In addition, Max Bracero recorded six tackles of his own and Jaxon Hall had five, while teammate Jarrett Blackhurst managed to snag an interception.

“I was pleased with the way we responded in our last game of the season. To finish 6-2 is a testament to the kids and the coaching staff. The goal going into this game was to send the eighth graders out on a winning note,” coach Bobby Beltner stated.

“With all the uncertainty going into this season with COVID-19, we were lucky to be able to play eight games, which in middle school football is a complete season,” he shared.

Beltner continued reflecting on the efforts of his young team this season by saying, “then to win six out of the eight games was a bonus for us for sure. So, I feel this was a very successful season without question.”

As he looks ahead he revealed that he believes the team will remain strong next season as well, noting that several players will be returning.

Coach Beltner had nothing but praise to heap upon his team this year.

“There are several players that made massive improvements. Cam Foley played outstanding as our starting quarter back this year. Kaden Keener, I knew was a good player, but I never expected him to rush for 868 yards in a season as a seventh grader. He now holds the record for yards rushing for a seventh grader at TCMS. As good as he was on offense, he was as good on defense leading our team in tackles for the season,”

Coach Beltner also commented on Knights Jarrett Blackhurst and Troy Weber, saying that they both had outstanding seasons as well from the backfield.

“Our offense line was just unbelievable all season with the likes of Brian Oiler, Max Braccero, Matthew Marsh, Andrew Collins, Riley Humphries and Elijah Loffler. Our kicker, Stratten Wooddell, is going to be special in a few years if he sticks with it. Cam Poling as a 6th grader got better every week. The list goes on and on, but at the end of the day, it is the assistant coaches that work their tails off every day that has made a difference in our program,” he boasted.

During the offseason Coach Beltner wants his team to keep working hard, hit the weight room and come ready to have another winning season next year.

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