Carson Deeb threw four touchdown passes Friday night as Bluefield earned its third straight trip to the Class AA state finals, earning a 40-24 victory at top-seeded Fairmont Senior.
The defending champion Polar Bears (12-1) saw their 26-game winning streak snapped. They beat the Beavers in last year’s finals and lost to Bluefield in the 2016 title game.
Deeb found Brandon Wiley on scoring tosses of 68 and 26 yards and Jahiem House on 14 and 17 yarders. J.J. Davis also scored a TD that he set up with his own interception on defense.
Bluefield (12-1), the No. 4 seed, plays the winner of Saturday’s Oak Glen at Bridgeport semifinal on Dec. 7 in Wheeling for the state title. The Beavers trailed 7-0 early Friday but bounced back into a 20-10 lead at halftime.
Wheeling Central 27, Pendleton County 7: Jordan Waterhouse ran for 179 yards, including a 68-yard touchdown, and collected two interceptions to lead 10th-seeded Wheeling Central to victory over third-seeded Pendleton County.
Jacob Rine ran for one touchdown and threw another to Jalen Creighton, who also had a touchdown pass to help the Knights (9-4) pull off the upset to return to Wheeling Island Stadium for a chance at a third straight Class A title.
After the Wildcats (11-2) took a 7-0 advantage on a 1-yard plunge from quarterback Isaiah Gardiner, the Knights forced four turnovers and rattled off 27 unanswered points to capture the win. Rine found Creighton for a 48-yard touchdown to tie the game, and two possessions later, Waterhouse broke loose for a 68-yard dash down the Central sideline to give his team a 14-7 edge.
Creighton took a pitch and found Payton Marling for a 25-yard touchdown pass of his own to make it 20-7 just before halftime, and Rine added another touchdown on a 15-yard quarterback option keeper to put the game out of reach.
Doddridge County 27, Williamstown 3: The Yellowjackets couldn’t overcome five turnovers as top-seeded Doddridge County advanced to next weekend’s Class A title game with a win over visiting fifth-seeded Williamstown (10-3).
Hunter America had three touchdown runs and Noah Bumgardner added another for the Bulldogs (13-0). It will be the first appearance in the state title game for Doddridge since 1978, and just its second ever. The Bulldogs will look to wrap up a perfect season at 7 p.m. on Dec. 7 in Wheeling against defending champion Wheeling Central.