MORGANTOWN — It’s been quite the abrupt fall from grace for University this fall.
The Hawks finished the 2017 regular season undefeated, their campaign ending in a Class AAA playoff quarterfinal appearance. With WVU commit Amir Richardson returning for his senior season at receiver and safety, and Bowling Green commit Logan Holgorsen transferring in from cross-town rival Morgantown to take the reins at quarterback, expectations were high at UHS. The Hawks entered the season ranked fifth in Class AAA.
Now, following the Hawks’ 35-28 loss at John Marshall last Friday, the toughness of the star-studded roster is in question. The Monarchs carved through the UHS defense, piling up 323 rushing yards while keeping a tight grip on the clock.
“It was a tough road game and a disappointing loss,” UHS coach John Kelley said. “They were bigger, stronger, and tougher than us. Our time of possession was very unbalanced and we must correct that.”
The defense will surely need some attention as the Hawks take on their second straight road challenge in Week 2, as they visit Parkersburg South in OVAC action at 7 p.m. Aug. 31. South senior Nick Yoho poses a dangerous threat, which he proved during a 227-yard, three touchdown performance as the Patriots routed Ripley 27-7 in Week 1.
“They’re coming off a huge blowout win over a good team, so they’ll be sky high for us,” Kelley said. “We look forward to the challenge.”
What wasn’t in doubt for University is their offensive talent, as they tallied 343 yards against the Monarchs. Holgorsen launched four touchdown passes to cap a 271-yard performance, while senior Evan Parow reeled in two touchdowns and 142 receiving yards.
The Hawks are riding a two-game winning streak against the Patriots, winning at home last season, 49-24, and knocking off Parkersburg South on the road in 2016, 16-9.
Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. today at the Erickson All-Sport Facility in Parkersburg.