North Wilkes ended a long losing skid to the Huskies, beating them for the first time in a decade.
The Huskies had two chances late in the fourth quarter to get the win, but saw a 27-yard field goal from Anthony Federico get partially blocked, and then a turnover on downs on the final drive to end the game.
North got on the board first with a 20-yard touchdown pass from L.J. Hendren to Josh Martin with 7:39 remaining in the first quarter. The Vikings converted the extra point to put the score at 7-0.
Ashe made a change at quarterback this week, promoting junior varsity QB Connor Bowers and giving him his first start at the varsity level. With the new QB came a bit of a change in the offense as well, moving from the spread to the I-Formation, something that Bowers had been familiar with from his JV experience.
Jonathan Cox got Ashe on the board with an 18-yard touchdown run just two minutes later to answer the earlier Viking score. Federico booted the extra point, tying things up at 7-7.
Hendren used the aerial assault to lead the Vikings to another score. This one was a 62-yard strike to Martin once again to put North Wilkes back in front. North then went for the two-point conversion and got it, making the score 15-7 with just over four minutes left in the first half.
The score would remain the same until the third quarter when Cox powered into the endzone from seven yards out to bring the Huskies back to within two points. However, Ashe could not pick up the two-point score.
With less than two minutes left, Ashe got into field goal range for the possible game-winning kick. Federico’s kick was partially blocked, and the ball sailed left of the upright.
On the final drive under a minute to play, the Vikings made a fourth down stop on a short pass from Bowers to Cox to seal the win.
Bowers finished the game completing six of his 15 passes for 69 yards and an interception in his first start on the varsity team.
Cox led the way in the backfield with 111 yards on 26 carries with two touchdowns. Brandon Wingler, who transitioned from offensive line to fullback, had six carries for 23 yards.
Jacob Blevins finished the game with two catches for 37 yards. Cox reeled in three passes for 22 yards and Eli Gambill added one catch for 10 yards in his return to the wide receiver position.
Ashe fell to 2-5 overall and 1-3 in the Mountain Valley Athletic Conference. North Wilkes improved its record to 3-4 overall and 3-2 in MVAC play.
The Huskies will return home this week to face Alleghany.
In JV action, Ashe won its fourth straight game, beating North Wilkes 33-6.
Other area scores:
East Surry 20, Bishop McGuinness 7
Alleghany 28, East Wilkes 15
Elkin 35, West Wilkes 21
Wilkes Central 41, Forbush 3
Hendersonville 19, Avery County 0
Hibriten 43, St. Stephens 0
Mount Airy 45, North Stokes 7
North Surry 23, South Stokes 20
Elizabethton (Tn.) 40, Watauga 8
Bandys 54, West Caldwell 0
West Stokes 35, Surry Central 14
Starmount (6-0 overall, 4-0 MVAC)
Wilkes Central (5-1 overall, 4-0 MVAC)
North Wilkes (3-4 overall, 3-2 MVAC)
West Wilkes (3-4 overall, 3-2 MVAC)
Elkin (3-3 overall, 2-2 MVAC)
Alleghany (2-5 overall, 2-2 MVAC)
Ashe (2-5 overall, 1-3 MVAC)
East Wilkes (1-6 overall, 1-4 MVAC)
Forbush (0-7 overall, 0-5 MVAC)