Ashe County spoiled Elkin’s senior night with a high-scoring game that gave the Huskies fifth place in the conference standings.
Well, high scoring is an understatement. Starmount beat Alleghany 46-21 — that is high scoring. The losing team in this one posted 42 points.
On Nov. 27, 1966, the Washington Redskins beat the New York Giants 72-41. That was an NFL record for most points by one team and most points by both teams.
Ashe County and Elkin bested both those marks Friday night in a 73-42 game.
While the game was a 31-point blowout, there was a time in the third quarter when Elkin had momentum and looked like it might go ahead.
Ashe County led 34-14 with just 1:22 left in the first half. Elkin managed to score just before the half, then opened the third quarter with another score to cut the margin to 34-28.
The Huskies needed just 68 seconds to answer and go up 40-28. Elkin did better than that, scoring in 56 seconds to close to 40-35.
The Elks looked like they might get the ball back with momentum on a third-down play. However, the defense jumped early, giving Ashe County a first down. Then the Huskies went on to score a touchdown, then added four more to put the game away.
Ashe QB Colin Ellis had an incredible game, going for more than 300 yards through the air and another 300 on the ground. He had a hand in all 11 of the team’s touchdowns. He rushed for six TDs and passed for four more. And in the second quarter, he ran toward the right edge then gave an option toss to RB John Reavis, who scored on a 13-yard run.
By The Tribune’s unofficial totals, Ellis had 237 yards passing and 71 yards rushing in the first half. Then with Elkin spread out to stop the pass in the second half, Ellis rushed for 286 yards while passing for 82. That gave him 319 yards through the air and 357 on the ground (on 25 carries for a 14.3 yards average).
Coach Brian Hampton pulled Ellis in the final minutes to a boisterous cheer from the visiting crowd.
How efficient were the offenses in this game? Ashe County didn’t have a punt through the first three quarters. Elkin had just three punts in three quarters, and neither team had a turnover until a fumble on a kickoff near the end of the third quarter.
The win improves Ashe County to 4-7 and 3-4 in the Mountain Valley. Wilkes Central went undefeated in league play to take the conference championship. With West Wilkes edging East Wilkes, those two teams are tied for second place with North Wilkes at 5-2.
The loss clinches a winless year for Elkin at 0-11.
At one point in the first quarter, Elkin had a long drive with five first downs before Hayden Brooks scored from a yard out. With an extra point, that made it 7-6.
One Elkin fan asked another, “Hey, is that our first lead of the season?”
The Elks didn’t win, but they certainly gave the home crowd plenty of great plays to cheer about.
Brooks, Luke Anderson and Jaylen Mayes had touchdowns in the first half. Brooks, Wade Wagoner and Colt Henderson scored TDs in the second half.
Mayes almost had a second touchdown at the end of the third quarter. Ashe kicked off, and the up man who caught the ball handed it off to Mayes, who swept up the right side and outran everyone except Grant Thompson who was waiting ahead. Mayes made a cut to the inside, with Thompson only getting a hand out to slow him down.
That proved to be enough as a pursuing defender hit Mayes from behind and tackled him at the 10-yard line. Unfortunately, Mayes was bent backward awkwardly on the tackle and stayed down.
Just before the teams switched ends for the start of the fourth quarter, medical personnel on the scene immobilized Mayes’ left leg and carted him off the field for Hugh Chatham Memorial Hospital.
At the start of the game, Ashe County scored in just 1:23 as Ellis hit Simon Houck for a 42-yard strike. With a missed kick it was 6-0.
Then Elkin had its long, grinding drive to go up 7-6.
A sack started Ashe off in a deep hole, but passes to Houck and Reavis led to a six-yard run for Ellis to go up 12-7. This extra point also missed. The first Ashe try just missed the right upright, flicking the flag atop the pole. The second attempt hit the right upright dead on and bounced back on the field.
From then until the last TD of the game, Ashe County went for two-point tries.
After Elkin’s first punt, Ashe had a chance at a long TD pass bounce off the receiver’s hands. Still, the Huskies marched down and scored on a 23-yard pass to Reavis. Thompson caught a two-point catch to make it 20-7.
After a second punt, Ashe got a 54-yard catch and run from Houck, then the 13-yard TD run from Reavis to make it 28-7 (with Houck catching a two-point try).
Anderson caught a screen pass on the left side and went 37 yards to bring Elkin closer at 28-14.
Elkin had a shot at an interception, but couldn’t bring it in. Ashe went on to score with a 16-yard strike to Thompson on a post route. That made it 34-14 with only 1:22 left in the half.
Beau Burgess moved the team downfield quickly and hit Mayes for a short pass that turned into a 25-yard TD with 12 seconds left in the half. That made it 34-21 at the break.
Elkin got the opening kickoff and drove right down the field. Brooks scored from three yards out to make it 34-28.
But, Ellis broke loose for a 72-yard scamper that made it 40-28.
Burgess and Wagoner couldn’t connect on a sure touchdown, but later in the drive they would hook up for a 45-yard TD to get Elkin to 40-35.
That’s when Coach Hampton decided to stop throwing haymakers and start working the body. Ashe County ran seven plays on the next drive — none of them a pass play. The Huskies ran the ball over and over, with Ellis getting six carries including a 5-yard TD. That made it 46-35.
Then Elkin had a rare three-and-out and punted away. Ashe bobbled the catch, but Elkin couldn’t get to the loose ball.
The Huskies were backed up in their own red zone for the first time, but Ellis raced 47 yards across midfield. He finished the drive with a 14-yard TD. He also scored a two-point conversion on a run to make it 54-35.
Ashe went with an onside kick and recovered. Then Matthew Greer caught a pass, pulled free of two defenders and went 43 yards for a touchdown to make it 60-35. Then came Mayes’ long run and injury. In the fourth quarter, Elkin went on to score with a 4-yard catch by TE Colt Henderson. Ellis would score on runs of 11 yards and 53 yards to finish the scoring.
Elkin ends their season with a 0-11 overall record, and a conference record of 0-5. The Elks will look to rebuild in the offseason and come out stronger next season.
Note: Elkin football coaches were waiting to hear back from the doctor on Saturady afternoon about the extent of Mayes’ injury. This post will be updated as details are available.
Jeff Linville is associate editor of The Mount Airy News and can be reached at 336-415-4692.