BLUEFIELD — Coach Fred Simon's postgame talk had to be delayed on Friday night.
There was a big fireworks show for his Bluefield Beavers football team to watch.
The Beavers earned a few minutes of enjoyment, after keeping their heads in the game and defeating the Woodrow Wilson Flying Eagles 48-15 in the teams' regular-season finale.
There were lots of potential distractions for Bluefield (9-1). Would they finish fourth in the Class AA ratings? Would West Virginia Governor Jim Justice show up as scheduled to celebrate Mitchell Stadium being named the "best high school football stadium in America"? Would the fireworks in honor of that designation be as spectacular as the city of Bluefield had envisioned?
And, importantly, would they put away their Class AAA opponents from Beckley efficiently and early, and pick up the win?
The answer to all this was "yes."
Juwaun Green took the opening kickoff 80 yards down the home sideline for a touchdown, JJ Davis ran for 182 yards and three touchdowns on six carries, Carson Deeb completed six of nine passes for 115 yards and the Beavers pulled out to a 48-0 lead on Woodrow Wilson (1-9).
Bluefield head coach Fred Simon said, "We started the season with the governor coming. We ended the regular season with the governor coming. It's been a neat season ... ."
He said about Friday's game, "We did what we had to do to win. We scored quick and early, which I thought was great, and put the game out of reach.
"I'm just proud of (the team), proud of what they've done all season long."
The Flying Eagles made it a game early. Their first possession, consisting of 18 plays, took up 9 1/2 minutes of the first quarter and reached the Bluefield 9, but the visitors gave the ball up on downs.
Woodrow Wilson head coach Street Sarrett said, "We just put it together and it was going, but we couldn't finish. Couldn't finish."
The Beckley squad consumed the final 7:28 of the first half, running 16 plays and converting four first downs, but again could not score, allowing the Beavers to take a 21-0 lead into intermission.
Simon said, "Defensively, we made a couple of adjustments in what they were doing, with that double-tight (offensive formation). They did a good job trying to keep the ball away from us. I thought they had a good game plan."
Two of Bluefield's third-quarter possessions lasted one play. Each was a 51-yard touchdown run by Davis. A 24-yard interception return by Bluefield's Ryker Brown produced a 41-0 lead, after the extra point kick by the Beavers' all-time kicking leader Kaulin Parris.
Two Woodrow Wilson seniors, playing their last high school football game, got Beckley on the board in the final period.
Zach Weaver plowed up the middle for a 10-yard TD with 3:29 remaining, and after the Flying Eagles recovered an onside kick, they moved quickly downfield and Mykel McDowell tallied his final touchdown from 2 yards out.
Hezekyiah Creasy did not disappoint, either. The junior ran 25 times for 124 yards, picking up seven rushing first downs. Weaver had 36 yards on the ground and 25 as a receiver.
The Flying Eagles put together 292 total yards while Bluefield amassed 329 yards.
Sarrett said Bluefield is "a tough team, one of the better teams we've played. We play in the MSAC (Mountain State Athletic Conference), and I'll tell you right now, they could play with any team in the MSAC."
He said he had "a tough bunch of seniors on this ballclub, and we're going to miss them. ... I wouldn't trade them for the world. A great bunch of boys, a great bunch of men."
Bluefield will host a first-round Class AA playoff game next week, but will not find out until Sunday whether the game will be scheduled for next Friday or Saturday.
Woodrow Wilson........0 0 0 15 -- 15
Bluefield..................14 7 20 7 -- 48
Blfd -- Juwaun Green 80 kickoff return (Kaulin Parris kick), 11:44
Blfd -- JJ Davis 60 run (Parris kick), 0:50.7
Blfd -- Brandon Wiley 27 pass from Carson Deeb (Parris kick), 9:56
Blfd -- Davis 51 run (Parris kick), 8:56
Blfd -- Davis 51 run (kick failed), 4:09
Blfd -- Ryker Brown 24 interception return (Parris kick), 3:00
Blfd -- Jaeon Flack 15 run (Parris kick), 7:58
WW -- Zach Weaver 10 run (Weaver run), 3:29
WW -- Mykel McDowell 2 run (Joseph Wells kick), 2:00
RUSHING -- WW, Hezekyiah Creasy 25-124, Mykel McDowell 3-36, Martay Lee 4-31, Bryant Jones 6-18, Zach Weaver 5-36, Matthew Moore 5-18, Antwon Burnett 1-4, Maddex McMillen 4-(-3). Blfd, JJ Davis 6-182, Jaeon Flack 3-29, Sean Martin 1-20, Garrett Jordan 1-1, Carson Deeb 2-(-12), team 2-(-6).
PASSING -- WW, Jones 2-6-22-0-1; McMillen 5-9-3-0-0; John Chappell 0-1-0-0-0. Blfd, Deeb 6-9-115-1-1.
RECEIVING -- WW, Burnett 1-6, Weaver 3-25, Jones 3-(-6). Blfd, Juwuan Green 3-72, Wiley 1-27, House 1-(-1), Jacorian Green 1-17.
First downs, WW 19, Blfd 12. Rushes-yards WW 53-267, Blfd 15-214. Passing yards WW 25, Blfd 115. Comp-att-intc WW 7-16-1, Blfd 6-9-1. Total yards WW 292, Blfd 329. Penalties-yards WW 5-27, Blfd 3-16.