Wheeling Park Scores Late, Outlasts Parkersburg South [VIDEO]

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Before Friday night, when Parkersburg South looked in the mirror they saw Wheeling Park staring back at them.

The two Patriot teams came into Friday’s game at Erickson All-Sports Facility 6-2 on the season, with Parkersburg South ranked eighth and Wheeling Park ninth in West Virginia Class AAA and looking to keep their playoff hopes alive.

Ultimately, it was Wheeling Park (7-2) who proved themselves as the dominant side as it edged Parkersburg South (6-3) 25-24 in a Two Rivers Athletic Conference and Ohio Valley Athletic Conference matchup.

After going into half with a 10-7 lead, Parkersburg South opened the third quarter with a 31-yard touchdown run from quarterback Garrett Gilkeson. Wheeling Park replied with 12 unanswered points, courtesy of senior Michael Grove. The running back, wide receiver combination rushed for 14 and then 38 yards to give Wheeling Park its first lead of the night with 22.8 seconds left in the third quarter.

From there, Gilkeson marched his team down the field to set up a four-yard run by Brendan Schwendeman, putting Parkersburg South up 24-19 with ten minutes of play remaining.

After tenacious play, Wheeling Park found itself at the Parkersburg South four-yard line, facing fourth down. Senior quarterback Killian Coyne curled out on a bootleg and found a sprinting Schwendeman who plunged into the end zone.

Leading by one, Wheeling Park had two minutes to hold off Parkersburg South.

Gilkeson showed his efficiency by again driving his offense down the field, but the offense did take advantage of free yards when a pass interference call brought them all the way to the Wheeling Park 33-yard line. With seconds left in the game, Gilkeson looked to his primary receiver Cody Boggs in the end zone, but the pass was picked off by Wheeling Park’s Elijah Bell with 7.6 seconds left in the game.

Wheeling Park took a knee to seal the 25-24 victory.

Grove, who ended the night 120 yards rushing, 87 yards receiving and two touchdowns, led Wheeling Park in total yardage. Coyne went 12-15 passing for 135 yards and a touchdown in the win.

Parkersburg South’s leading performer was once again Gilkeson, who threw only for 57 yards, but rushed for 167. The junior scored two touchdowns in the game, bringing his season total to 19.

Parkersburg South ends their regular season next week Nov. 11 against in-town rival Parkersburg while Wheeling Park takes on John Marshall at home.