Big Reds Travel To Second Ranked Capital Cougars on Friday
Out of the frying pan and into the fire for the Parkersburg Big Red football team.
After playing fourth ranked Cabell Midland this past week at home, PHS now must hit the road to play second ranked Capital on Friday at Charleston’s Laidley Field.
While defending champ Martinsburg is ranked number one, Capital is the team many experts say is the leading title contender this year with more talent than any other team in the Mountain State.
Like the Knights, the Cougars are unbeaten and even more of a big play team than Cabell Midland. Capital has crushed Riverside 60-12 and Princeton 49-13 (both games on the road). They have four rushers averaging over 13 yards per carry, three receivers averaging over 22 yards per catch and are averaging over 22 yards per punt return. They are averaging 405.5 yards per game in total offense while allowing just 181 yards per game.
Quarterback Tyhree Pratt, a Division I NCAA recruit, has completed 17 of 28 passes in two games for 315 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions. He has rushed for 136 yards on just eight carries (17 yard average) and two more scores (one a 75 yard scamper).
Speedy Kashuan Haley has rushed for 226 yards on 16 attempts (14.1 average) and six touchdowns with his longest run being 72 yards. Against Princeton he ran for 208 yards on 10 carries and scored five times. Tyrell Davis is the other running back. All he has done is score four touchdowns on 12 carries while gaining 93 yards.
Leading receiver is Jordan Kinney, who has caught eight passes for 178 yards (22.2 average) and two touchdowns. Miguel Bays has caught four passes while Davis has added yet another touchdown on one of his two receptions.
Kicker Tyler Shaffer has hit 13 of 14 extra points and one field goal.
Outside linebacker Dorian Etheridge (6-3, 205 soph.) leads the team with 13 tackles, including four for loss and has one sack. Junior middle linebacker Devon Adkins is second on the team in tackles.
Meanwhile, the Big Reds must regroup after their loss to the Knights, which did see the return of starters Corey Burdette (on offense only) and Stephen Dailey as well as lineman Jonathan Null.
Jordan Colebank turned in a great game with 13 tackles against Cabell, nearly coming up with an interception which would have led to a touchdown but had the ball stripped away by the intended receiver. Max Chefren also turned in a fine defensive game with 10 tackles and a forced fumble. Chefren also had a 41 yard kickoff return on which he rumbled over one would-be tackler. Ethan Airhart also had 10 tackles and an interception for the Big Reds.
But offensively PHS struggled due to lack of time on the field. Cabell Midland ran 75 offensive plays to just 43 for the Big Reds.
Burdette’s return saw him rush for 67 yards on 15 carries and he scored once on the ground and once through the air.
Quarterback Josh Trembly has completed just nine of 21 passes this year but has thrown for 158 yards and three scores. He has some talented receivers in Dailey, Colebank, Austin Life and Brannon Turner while leading rusher Dan Fox, who was the leading receiver the last two years, has yet to catch his first pass of the 2014 season.
Chefren, Colebank and Chase Shank lead the defense with 20, 16 and 14 tackles respectively. Chefren has three sacks, had forced two fumbles and recovered one and ran it in for a touchdown. Interestingly, Chefren plays almost entirely defense but has touched the ball twice and produced 63 all-purpose yards.
Cabell Midland Ground Game Sparks 42-21 Win Over Big Reds
Cabell Midland displayed an explosive three-pronged offense and remained unbeaten in three starts by rolling to a 42-21 win over the Big Reds Friday night at Stadium Field.
The Knights of coach Luke Salmons got four touchdowns from Alex Childers and had three backs rush for over 100 yards while cruising to a three touchdown win over PHS.
Showing their impressive victories and statistics in their first two outings were not flukes, the Knights rolled up 25 first downs and 549 yards in total offense while running 75 plays to just 43 for the home team. The visitors had 454 yards rushing on 66 attempts.
Childers gained 117 yards on 18 carries and caught one pass for 15 yards (and a touchdown). Caperton Humphreys ran for 157 yards on 18 attempts while quarterback Coy Pettit, who came into the game averaging an amazing 30 yards per carry, ran the ball 10 times for 140 yards and the game's first touchdown. He also completed four of nine passes for 95 yards and two scores.
PHS was held to 81 yards rushing and quarterback Josh Trembly completed just four of 12 passes for 84 yards as the Big Reds watched Cabell maintain possession for 29:53, nearly 12 more minutes than PHS.
An interception by Cabell's Josh Ellis on the game's third play gave the Knights the ball on the Parkersburg 46 yard line and three plays later they were in the end zone following a Pettit keeper for 38 yards with just 2:18 gone in the contest. Chris Heiner kicked the first of six straight extra points.
Two 15 yard penalties helped Cabell get its second score on a 62 yard drive that was capped by Childer's six yard run with 5:52 left on the clock in the first period.
Despite the return of Corey Burdette to the lineup, PHS could not generate anything offensively until its defense made a stop early in the second quarter on a fourth down play at the PHS 43. A great 30 yard pass reception by Stephen Dailey put the ball on the Cabell 13 yard line and three plays later Trembly found Burdette for the final nine yards to the end zone. Josh Roney's kick made it 14-7 with 8:37 left in the half.
A 43 yard run by Pettit helped set up the Knight's third TD just five plays later and the back breaker for PHS came when Midland took over at the Big Reds' 45 with just 1:05 left in the half. With just three seconds remaining before intermission Pettit found Childers in the left sideline corner of the end zone for touchdown number four and a 28-7 halftime advantage.
Midland scored on its first possession of the second half, going 78 yards on nine plays with Childers going the final 22.
Trailing by four scores, PHS went for it on fourth down at the Midland 25 and although Austin Life was able to gain five yards, the play was two yards short of a first down and the ball went over on downs. A 56 yard bomb to Seth Vickers ran the margin to 42-7 with 3:33 left in the third quarter.
The Big Reds tacked on two scores in the span of 1:30 early in the fourth quarter as Trembly found Dailey behind the secondary for a 40 yard pass play that was set up by Noah Weaver's tackle on fourth down. With 7:07 left in the game Burdette ran four straight times to score from the Midland 35 after a Tyler Greathouse fumble recovery.
Defensively, Jordan Colebank led the way for PHS with 13 tackles while Weaver added eight.
Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Total
Cabell Midland (3-0) 14 14 14 0 - 42
Parkersburg (1-1) 0 7 0 14 - 21 Qtr Time Scoring play
1st 09:42 MIDLAND - Coy Pettit 38 yd run (Chris Heiner kick), 3-46 1:03
05:52 MIDLAND - Alex Childers 6 yd run (Chris Heiner kick), 6-62 2:01
2nd 08:37 PHS - Corey Burdette 9 yd pass from Josh Trembly (Josh Roney kick), 4-43 1:49
07:07 MIDLAND - Alex Childers 9 yd run (Chris Heiner kick), 5-65 1:30
00:03 MIDLAND - Alex Childers 15 yd pass from Coy Pettit (Chris Heiner kick), 6-45 1:02
3rd 08:07 MIDLAND - Alex Childers 22 yd run (Chris Heiner kick), 8-78 3:53
03:33 MIDLAND - Seth Vickers 56 yd pass from Coy Pettit (Chris Heiner kick), 6-80 2:52
4th 08:37 PHS - Stephen Dailey 40 yd pass from Josh Trembly (Josh Roney kick), 1-40 0:08
07:07 PHS - Corey Burdette 3 yd run (Josh Roney kick), 4-35 1:20 ..........................................................MIDLAND PHS FIRST DOWNS 25 6 RUSHES-YARDS (NET) 66-454 29-81 PASSING YDS (NET) 95 84
Passes Att-Comp-Int 9-4-1 14-4-1 TOTAL OFFENSE PLAYS-YARDS 75-549 43-165
Fumble Returns-Yards 0-0 0-0
Punt Returns-Yards 2-45 0-0
Kickoff Returns-Yards 2-19 6-117
Interception Returns-Yards 1-11 1-0
Punts (Number-Avg) 1-27.0 8-32.8
Fumbles-Lost 2-1 0-0
Penalties-Yards 10-93 6-74
Possession Time 29:53 18:07
Third-Down Conversions 5 of 13 2 of 12
Fourth-Down Conversions 2 of 6 0 of 1
Red-Zone Scores-Chances 4-5 2-2
Sacks By: Number-Yards 1-9 0-0
RUSHING: Knights-Caperton Humphreys 18-157; Coy Pettit 10-140; Alex Childers 18-117; Drew Keeton 7-33; Tre Martin 5-10; Cole Sowards 3-8; JT Saunders 1-0; Jacob Hendricks 4-minus 11. Big Reds-Corey Burdette 15-67; Ethan Airhart 1-5; Josh Trembly 8-4; Dan Fox 3-4; Chase Shank 1-1; Zavian Peacock 1-0.
PASSING: Knights-Coy Pettit 4-9-1-95. Big Reds-Josh Trembly 4-12-1-84; Ethan Airhart 0-1-0-0; Dan Fox 0-1-0-0.
RECEIVING: Knights-Seth Vickers 1-56; Tanner Mullins 1-25; Alex Childers 1-15; Jacob Hendricks 1-minus 1. Big Reds-Stephen Dailey 2-70; Corey Burdette 1-9; Austin Life 1-5.
INTERCEPTIONS: Knights-Devin Stapleton 1-11. Big Reds-Ethan Airhart 1-0.
FUMBLES: Knights-Drew Keeton 1-1; Alex Childers 1-0. Big Reds-None.
Kickoff time: 7:30 • End of Game: 10:04 • Total elapsed time: 2:34
TACKLES (UA-A): Big Reds-Jordan Colebank 5-8; Noah Weaver 4-4; Ethan Airhart 8-2; Max
Chefren 7-3; Chase Shank 4-4; Nick Johnson 5-0; Tyl Greathouse 1-3; Charley Conley 2-1; Austin Brown 1-5; Zach Carroll 1-2; Austin Griffith 1-1; Josh Trembly 1-2; Austin Life 2-1; Dan Fox 1-0; Terrance Tate 1-0; Austin Mitchell 1-1; Dakoda Sims 1-0; Ben McFarland 0-1; Jarrid Winters 1-0; Stephen Dailey 1-0; Graham Nesselrode 1-0; Brannon Turner 0-1; Corey Burdette 0-1.
Jayvees Crush Cabell Midland 53-8
ONA - Big plays, including two interception returns for scores, powered the PHS jayvees to a 53-8 win here Monday night.
Now 2-0, the jayvees got pick six plays from Easton Martin and Rylan Hamilton, who also both caught a touchdown pass from Karson Snyder. Snyder scored two touchdowns himself in just his second game ever as a quarterback. Dakoda Sims and Graham Nesselrode also scored for the Little Reds, who led 27-2 at the half.
Junior Varsity Football Sept. 14 at Ona, WV Parkersburg (2-0) 20 7 0 26 - 53 Cabell Midland..... 0 2 0 6 - 8
P – Easton Martin 41 interception return (kick failed) 8:00 1st
P – Karson Snyder 2 run (Chase Minnite kick) 4:05 1st
P – Rylan Hamilton 77 pass from Snyder (Minnite kick) 0:00 1st
CM – Safety, tackled quarterback in end zone, 4:23 2nd
P – Martin 15 pass from Snyder (Minnite kick) 1:39 2nd
P – Snyder 59 run (Minnite kick) 9:06 4th
P – Hamilton 75 interception return (kick blocked) 7:16 4th
P – Dakoda Sims 46 run (Minnite kick) 5:16 4th
CM – Cole Sowards 5 run (run failed) 4:07 4th
P – Graham Nesselrode 77 run (kick failed) 3:26 4th Team Statistics
Passing Yards – PHS 162 (4-5-1), CM 26
Rushing – PHS 175, CM 256 Individual Statistics
PHS passing: Snyder 4 of 5 for 162 yards (1 interception); PHS rushing: Zavian Peacock 5-7, Snyder 6-55, Nesselrode 1-77, Zach Blosser 2-0, Jaden Lacaria 1-(-11), Jarid Winters 2-(-3), Dakoda Sims 2-50; PHS Receiving: Martin 2-35, Hamilton 1-77, Blosser 1-50. Defense – PHS: Martin 2 interceptions, Hamilton interception, Roger Wright interception, Isaiah Gossett 10 tackles (4 for loss), Davey McNemar, Ethan Farinash. Jesse McGrew FBR, Nesselrode FBR. Next Game – PHS hosts Marietta on Sept. 22.
Lindamood, Davis, Elliott Enter PHS Football Hall of Fame on Friday
Matt Lindamood Earl “Jubie” Davis Jr. George Elliott
The first group of inductees into the 2014 class of the Parkersburg High School Football Hall of Fame includes three athletes with more honors than could fit in a book about their exploits.
There is the all-time record holder for all-time records at PHS, Matt Lindamood.
There is the first African-American first team all-stater in the history of PHS, Earl “Jubie” Davis.
And there is George Elliott, the captain and defensive leader of the Big Red team with the most impressive championship playoff run in history.
And there is even a link between all three. Lindamood’s uncle Mike was an all-stater and played on the same team with Davis while Matt’s father Mark was the center on the same championship team with Elliott. It should be quite a reunion of families at midfield when these three are honored.
The trio will be inducted into the Hall of Fame on Friday, Sept. 12, prior to the home game with Cabell Midland.
A young man whose name appears in the PHS record book more than any other athlete, Matt Lindamood was a two-time all-state selection and lead his team to state championships in 2006 and 2007. During his three years as a starter, the Big Reds went 35-5 under coach Bernie Buttrey.
Twice the powerful, yet speedy runner scored five touchdowns in a game. He is the second-highest single season scorer with 232 points in 2007 (4 behind the all-time record of Josh Romeo). He is also the fifth all-time high scorer with 264 as a junior. His totals of 38 and 27 touchdowns as a senior and junior rank him second and fourth all-time. For his career he ranks number one with 412 points (68 TDs and 2 ep), a whopping 80 points ahead of the second highest total.
Lindamood ranks first in single season and career rushing yardage and has the second and third highest single-game rushing performances. He gained 4,211 yards during his career (256 yards ahead of 3-time 1,000 yard rusher John Richards), and had season totals of 2,473 (including 695 in four playoff games in 2007) and 1,551 (6th best mark ever). He gained 297 yards and 287 yards in separate games as a senior with the record being 299 yards by Ryan Holbert.
As a senior he was runner-up in the Kennedy Award voting and went on to become a starting fullback at West Virginia University before an injury in 2012. After two years of mission work in Los Angeles, Israel and Ecuador he turned to strength and conditioning and is currently a sports performance coach at TCBoost in Northbrook, IL.
When Sumner High School closed its doors in 1954, the talented black athletes enrolled at PHS but it was not until 15 years later that one was voted first team all-state in West Virginia and that athlete was Earl “Jubie” Davis Jr., one of eight siblings to walk the Big Red halls.
Davis helped PHS to a 7-2-1 record as a senior under Buddy James, losing to Charleston and Stonewall Jackson but tying Weir 8-8 thanks to eight points scored by Davis. There were other talented black athletes on the Big Reds that year, players like quarterback Mike Allen and speedy halfbacks Mike Carr and Frank Spriggs but it was Davis who caught everyone’s eye by catching seven touchdown passes and six two-point conversions while also returning a punt 48 yards for a score.
An outstanding athlete at an early age, Davis says one of his biggest thrills was being the only six year old to be picked on the Dils Brothers Little League team. Attending Jefferson Elementary and then Washington Junior High, Davis credits his later success with instruction given to him at the Boys Club under Frank Siebel and the coaching of Dike Goff in junior high. He was awarded the Most Valuable Player Award for all sports at WJHS.
The push for perfection at PHS by the Big Red coaching staff helped Davis go on to play football and track for two years at Fairmont State College before joining the Air Force in 1973. His tour of duty lasted 20 years and he served, among other things, as Master Drill Instructor, and was even chosen to retrain the marching unit that had been in Operation Desert Storm that was to march before the president. He is currently working in the U.S. Postal Service and living in Fort Worth, TX, with his wife Arlette and has five children, six grand children and five great-grand children.
Defense was the name of the game for PHS football in the 1970’s and the biggest defensive name was George Elliott.
In 1974 he played on a state runner-up team that went 10-2. As a junior he had 82 tackles on a team which went 8-2, finished sixth in the state and had four shutouts. The 1975 team did not make the playoffs because only the top four teams qualified even though they beat one of those teams, Parkersburg South (14-6). As a senior captain in 1976 the Big Reds went 10-2, winning the state title with an awesome show of defensive prowess – shutting out the two highest-scoring teams in the state that year, Martinsburg and DuPont. Elliott led the team with 130 tackles, an incredible 17 sacks, and six fumble recoveries. The Big Reds that year shut out eight opponents.
Elliott was not through with his football accomplishments, though. He helped return the Marshall University football program to prominence following the plane crash which wiped out the team. He was a four year starter as middle guard and defensive tackle under Frank Ellwood and Sonny Randle. As a junior he had 69 tackles and in 1978 was second on the team with 114 tackles and a fumble recovery. He was Southern Conference Player of the Week in September, 1978 after making 17 tackles against MAC champion Toledo.
He returned to PHS to coach as an assistant in 1983-86, helping the Big Reds reach the playoffs in 1983 and finish second in the state in 1986 while coaching three all-state linemen in Rick Phillips, Scott Swanson and Scott Adams. He then coached at four high schools in Virginia from 1987 to 1998.
Snyder Passes PHS JVs Over Warren, 26-6
Karson Snyder, playing his first ever game at quarterback, led the Big Red jayvees to a 26-6 win over visiting Warren by throwing for 196 yards and two touchdowns while also leading the team in rushing.
Snyder completed eight of 10 passes and ran the ball 14 times for 38 yards in his first endeavor as a signal caller. Easton Martin caught four of the passes for 111 yards and a 45 yard touchdown while Rylan Hamilton caught a 50 yard TD bomb from Snyder. Jarrid Winters and Graham Nesselrode had touchdown runs for PHS in their jayvee opener.
Defensively, PHS did not allow a score as Warren's only points came on a punt return. Led by Kendall Leary's 10 tackles, the Big Reds gave up just two first downs and only 27 yards in total offense to the Warriors.
A 41 yard pass from Snyder to Martin set up the game's first TD, a 19 yard run up the middle by Winters early in the second quarter.
Warren answered with the punt return TD by Alex Mills to cut the lead to 7-6 but Snyder found Hamilton on the next offensive play by PHS for a 50 yard TD play. On the ensuing kickoff, Dakoda Sims recovered a fumble and three plays later Snyder and Martin hooked up again, this time for a touchdown that made it 19-6 at the half.
PHS fumbled away two scoring chances in the second half before finally reaching the end zone again on Nesselrode's 13 yard run with just under two minutes left to play.
Warren Local JV 0 6 0 0 - 6 Parkersburg JV 0 19 0 7 - 26
P – Jarrid Winters 19 run (Chase Minnite kick) 7:43 2nd
W – Alex Mills 50 punt return (pass failed) 1:53 2nd
P – Rylan Hamilton 50 pass from Karson Snyder (kick failed) 1:38 2nd
P – Easton Martin 45 pass from Snyder (run failed) 0:39 2nd
P – Graham Nesselrode 13 run (Minnite kick) 1:54 4th Team Statistics
First Downs – Warren 2, PHS 14; Rushes-Yardage – Warren 19-7, PHS 37-93; Passing Yardage – Warren 20, PHS 196; PC-PC-INT – Warren 3-12-0, PHS 8-10-0; Punts-Average – Warren 5-27.6, PHS 3-34.7; Fumbles-Lost – Warren 4-2, PHS 3-3; Penalties-Yardage – Warren 4-24, PHS 7-60. Individual Leaders
Rushing - Warren: Bryce Gandee 3-7, Tanner Wriston 6-14, Jake Davis 6-(-11), Alex Mills 2-1; PHS: Jarrid Winters 7-25, Easton Martin 2-22, Karson Snyder 14-38, Zach Blosser 5-(-1), Graham Nesselrode 8-17, Zavian Peacock 1-(-2), Rylan Hamilton 1-11.
Passing – Warren: Gandee 3-12-0 20; PHS: Snyder 8-10-0 196.
Receiving – Warren: Bishop Ford 1-14, Michael Smith 1-4, Mills 1-2; PHS: Blosser 3-35, Martin 4-111, Hamilton 1-50.
Tackle Leaders – PHS: Kendall Leary 10 (2 sacks), Davey McNemar 6 (2 PBU, 1 FBR), Nesselrode 5 (1 PBU), Henry Hickman 5, Ethan Farinash 5, Issiah Gossett 5, Dakoda Sims (1 FBR), Peacock 4 (1 PBU), Jesse McGrew 4, Roger Wright 4, Max Turner 4.
Freshmen Open With 22-22 Tie at Cabell Midland
ONA - Tyee Gibson broke loose for a 40 yard touchdown run with 1:45 remaining in the game and Seth Dailey ran for the tying two-point conversion as Parkersburg's freshman football team opened its season with a 22-22 tie with host Cabell Midland.
The PHS gridders scored first on a 36 yard run by Zion Atkinson with Gibson getting the conversion and held a 14-6 halftime lead after Dailey threw a 28 yard touchdown pass to Nathaniel Steed in the second quarter.
9th Grade Football Parkersburg..... 8 6 0 8 - 22 Cabell Midland..... 6 0 0 16 - 22
P – Zion Atkinson 36 run (Tyee Gibson run)
CM – Fumble recovery in end zone (conversion failed)
P – Nathaniel Steed 28 pass from Seth Dailey (run failed)
CM – touchdown (conversion good)
CM – touchdown (conversion good)
P – Gibson 40 run (Seth Dailey run), 1:45 4th
Commemorative t-shirts and bracelets are available and donations can now be made online here at the football web site by clicking on the PayPal icon under the t-shirt photograph on the left side of the page. Online contributions will be added to the sponor lists if the amount is sufficient.Contributors are reminded that tax deductible checks will be accepted. They should be made out to PHS Stadium Committee.
Sponsors are being sought with 10 levels of donations - Seat Named $200, Bronze $500, Silver $1,000, Gold $2,000 and Platinum $2,500, Team Captain $5,000, Reserved Seat Row $10,000, White $15,000, Team Spirit $20,000, PHS Big Red $50,000. Sponsors will have three years to honor their pledges. Sponsors meeting any of the pledge levels will be listed on a plaque to displayed prominently in the Stadium.
Donations from fans and alumni who are proud of Stadium Field and its storied 93 year history may also be sent to Parkersburg High School in care of Charlotte Potter, Stadium Field Committee, 2101 Dudley Avenue, Parkersburg, WV 26101.
The home side finished product!
History of Stadium Field
In the spring of 1923 a group of men got together to form a stadium committee whose sole intent was to build a stadium for the newly constructed Parkersburg High School.
Those men included John S. Echols, President of the Board of Education, C.M. Martin, Sherman Dils, J.H. Biddle, C.T. Hitshaw, Herbert Smith, John Randolph, and Paul L. Summers. The committee was incorporated on July 14, 1923 and became known as the Parkersburg High School Corporation. The process of forming a corporation was necessary because the bonded indebtedness of the Board of Education was then at the peak permitted by law. Also serving on this committee was Fayette Smoot, H.L. Martin, Edward Doesch, H.R. Debussey and W.O. Holiday. The corporation leased the back campus from the Board of Education. It was impossible, according to the law of the time, for such a corporation to build any structure on land owned by a board of education. Therefore, the board had to turn over the land known as Stadium Field, on a 99-year lease to this corporation. The bonds were then released. The money for the bonds was to be recovered through football games and other activities held at the stadium.
The stadium was the first of its kind (concrete) in West Virginia and must have been the first of its kind to be built for the use of tax-supported institution without the investment of a single tax dollar.
The plans were to build one side of the stadium in 1923 and to build the other side the following year. The end of the U-shaped stadium was to be completed in the third year. When finally, completed it was to seat about 13,000 people. The end or bowl section of the stadium was never completed according to plans. The total cost of construction for the two sides was $104,000.
In just one day after the meeting in which the stadium plan was revealed, a total of $33,000 worth of bonds was sold.
In September of 1923 the first concrete was poured for the West stands of the stadium and on Oct. 4, 1923, the first game in the new stadium was played between the Big Reds of Parkersburg High School and Athens, Ohio. The Big Reds won by a 14-13 score. Ticket prices were 25 cents for student seating, 15 cents for student standing room. For the general public, the price was season ticket was $5 for seats and $4 for standing room.
In 1925 the stadium was officially dedicated. As part of the dedication, a race from Parkersburg to Marietta was held.
The installation of the stadium lights during the fall of 1940 made it possible for football games to be played at night. Until that time, most games were played on Saturday afternoon. The lights were installed by the Parkersburg Junior Chamber of Commerce at a cost of $7,000.75. The electric bill for the use of the lights was $3.25 per hour or about $10 for each game.
The lights were put in for the dual purpose of protecting the health of the players from the intense heat and to increase attendance. Among other reasons cited for the lighting was so that persons who worked Saturday afternoon could see the Big Reds play and so that the Stadium could be used for the purpose of holding other outdoor events such as political rallies or church events. Businessmen also felt that by playing Friday night games, Saturday afternoon business would be bolstered.
The first night game at PHS Stadium was Sept. 6, 1940 with the Big Reds beating Grantsville 50-0.
During the 1984-85 football season part of the stadium stands were closed for safety reasons. On June 13, 1988 it was recommended that both sides of the stands be closed. On June 14 the Board of Education accepted that recommendation.
During the summer of 1988 temporary bleachers were purchased and put up. Remodeling was done with funding help from C.O. Erickson and began in 1992. It was totally completed in 1994 with structural steel and concrete used to repair the stands.
In 1995 PHS qualified for home playoff games. After beating North Marion in the first round, the Big Reds were scheduled to host Wheeling Park. The Patriots protested the playing conditions at Stadium Field (no grass and nothing but mud) and a state inspection committee upheld the protest – moving the game to Tyler Consolidated High School. PHS won that game 28-7 and got to host the semifinal game after much work was done to repair the turf. But Hedgesville won the game 18-0 and the drive to install artificial turf on Stadium Field began in earnest.
The Stadium Renovation committee had its first planning session on Jan. 4, 1996 with more than two dozen members. In almost no time there were plans for an artificial surface to be added to the football field along with an 8-lane Eurotan track surface, new sidewalks, asphalt parking lot and refurbished concession stands.
On Aug. 30, 1996 the first game was played on AstroTurf Xl surface between Parkersburg South and Wheeling Park. On Sept. 6 the Big Reds played host to Hurricane on the new turf.
The cost of the new surface and renovations came to $1.25 million dollars which included $400,000 worth of in-kind services, $400,000 for advertising signs, $250,000 in donations and five bank loans of $400,000.
New light standards were installed in 1998. In 1999 new locker rooms were built in the Mary Lou Hague Memorial Sports and Arts complex at a cost of $536,390. In 2005 the restoration of the concrete stands was done at a cost of $129,356. In 2006 the turf was replaced at a cost of $295,000 with ProGrass artificial surface. In 2009 a new concession stand and restrooms were built on the home side at a cost of $195,000. The track was resurfaced in 2010 at a cost of $75,000 and in 2012 handrails were installed at a cost of $68,090.
In 2013 the home side bleachers were replaced in time for the second home game of the season. New seats were also installed with backs for the reserved seat section. The visiting bleachers still need to be replaced and contributions are still being taken.