By Michael Minnich
Tribune Sports Editor
mminnich@newstribune.info

KEYSER—The No. 4 Wayne Pioneers used their running game and solid defense to defeat the fifth-ranked Keyser Golden Tornado, 26-12, at Tornado Alley on Friday night.
Clyde Ferrell rushed for 124 yards and a touchdown to led WHS, who are coming off of a 13-1 season and a loss in the Class AA state championship game.
Keyser’s night was highlighed by a special teams TD by Kadeem Garland and a touchdown pass from Tyler Biser to Jamison Jones.
Wayne won the opening coin toss and elected to receive the kickoff to start the season.
Facing third-and-13, Jake Barr picked up 17 yards up the middle to move the chains for the Pioneers.
Wayne continued to chew up yardage on the ground.
Five plays later, Clyde Ferrell ran for a 16-yard gain to the KHS 27.
On fourth-and-6, Barr gained 14 yards to set up first-and-goal.
Ferrell finished off the drive with an eight-yard run, dragging several Tornado tacklers into the end zone for the touchdown with 4:38 left in the first quarter.
Allen Bryant missed the extra point.
Keyser had a 15-yard kickoff return by Jamison Jones cancelled out by a personal foul penalty, then lost yardage on three straight rushing plays and punted.
Starting from the Keyser 36, Wayne got a 23-yard run from Brandon Spurlock on second down, then Barr took it to the house from 11 yards out.
The two-point conversion was no good.
Wayne led, 12-0, with 1:33 left in the first quarter.
Wes Washington fumbled the ensuing kickoff, but got the ball back on an interception on the next play.
Keyser, starting from their own 7, moved the sticks for the first time on a nine-yard run by Kodie Evans.
On third-and-7, Tyler Biser connected with Washington in traffic for an 11-yard gain.
After a few medium-sized runs moved the ball into Wayne territory, Biser gained 18 yards on a keeper right.
Another Biser run on third down set up first-and-goal, but two Brandon Clay runs gained just three yards, then J.R. Flint lost nine yards.
On fourth-and-goal from the Wayne 15, Biser was sacked, and Keyser turned the ball over on downs with 4:12 left in the half.
The Pioneers picked up three first downs and moved the ball across midfield, but were content to let the clock run out and take a 12-0 lead into the locker room.
Wayne gained 145 first-half yards, all on the ground, while Keyser finished the half with 61 yards.
Two runs for loss sandwiched an incomplete pass as Keyser went three-and-out on the opening drive of the second half.
Wayne moved the sticks once, then a personal foul moved the ball all the way to the Keyser 15.
Two plays later, Zach Cassidy hit Corey Gilkerson in the end zone for a 13-yard touchdown pass.
The two-point conversion was no good.
Wayne led, 19-0, with 8:26 left in the third quarter.
But Kadeem Garland returned the kickoff 89 yards to the house for
Keyser's first score of the season.
Biser's pass into the end zone for the two-point conversion was no good.
Wayne led, 19-6, with 8:12 left in the third quarter.
After Ferrell gained five yards on first down, Barr, Ferrell, and
Paden Thompson rattled off back-to-back-to-back 12-yard runs to move the ball to the Keyser 20 with 6:31 left in the third quarter.
Barr, Ferrell, and Barr again moved the ball to the KHS 9, where Cassidy hit Thompson for his second passing TD.
Cassidy easily connected with Tyler Adkins for the two-point conversion.
Wayne led, 26-6, with 4:42 left in the third quarter.
Another good return by Garland set Keyser up at their own 40.
Keyser benefited from an encroachment penalty on second down and Evans picked up a first down on 3rd-and-1.
Clay ripped off seven yards to the Wayne 43, but a nice gain from Garland on a reverse was negated by a holding penalty and the drive stalled.
Levi Ebert thumped the punt 47 yards to pin Wayne at their own 5, and the KHS defense forced a punt, which was downed in good position for the Keyser offense at the Wayne 35.
But KHS went four yards in the wrong direction and turned the ball over on downs.
Thompson fumbled on second down, though, to give KHS some life with 10:04 left.
On fourth-and-9, Biser hit a crossing Clay for 11 yards, then Flint tore off 12 more stripes to the Wayne 10.
A hold moved the ball back 14 yards, then Evans gained ten back.
Biser then hit Jamison Jones in the left side of the end zone from 14 yards out.
The KHS QB was sacked on the two-point conversion attempt.
The lead was down to 26-12 with 6:53 left.
Ferrell ran on seven of the next eight plays to gain two first downs, but, more importantly, tick the clock under three minutes and make
Keyser burn two timeouts.
KHS took over the ball on downs with 2:40 left, but immediately fumbled it back on the snap.
Wayne ran out the clock.
Wayne won last year’s game, 22-0.
Before the game, junior Meghan Anderson was crowned Miss Tornado.
Anderson raised nearly $7,000 for KHS athletics.
Wayne (1-0) hosts Chesapeake (OH) next Friday at 7:30 p.m.
Keyser (0-1) is off next week before hosting Fort Hill on Saturday, September 11.
It will be the first non-Friday football game at Tornado Alley.