November 11, 1960 – Covington
Unbeaten, untied and rarely scored upon, the Covington Buccaneers climaxed a successful football season Friday night with a 62-8 thumping of the Centerville Elks before a capacity crowd at chilly Smith Field. Allowing his seniors to play almost three quarters of the finale, Blair Irvin’s precision machine established two small school records by amassing a 10-game offensive mark of 564 points while holding their opponents to but 33.
In bringing down the curtain on the 1960 campaign, the Buccaneers handed Coach Blair Irvin his 1,176 point in his three-year, 28-game tenure as head coach at Covington High School, held his defensive total to 145 points over the same time span which has produced a 24-4-0 record and amazing per-game average of 42 and 5.1 points…certainly enough evidence to put the amiable mentor at the top of the list for Class A “Coach of the Year” honors.
“This is truly a great bunch of boys,” said Blair Irvin after Friday night’s triumph. “A coach couldn’t have a better group to work with. I’m proud of every one.”
Despite the sixty-point total, Irvin’s freshman-loaded reserve squad has played almost as much as his varsity this year, and from all appearances, Covington will have some 23 letters to award this season. The reserves have figured in almost one-third of the season’s points total…and as was evident Friday night, have gained valuable experience for the 1961 campaign.
Fullback Bob Hartley’s 17-yard smash in the first period opened the scoring gates for the Buccaneers. A 15-yard penalty on a successful conversion pass moved the ball to the 18 for a second try, but Gordon McMaken was up to the occasion with an end sweep that put Covington in front 8-0. Minutes later, Hartley’s 56-yard aerial to Steve Wells gave the Buccaneers another TD. Hartley crashed for points-after and Covington had a 16-0 first period lead.
Halfback Gordon McMaken accounted for Covington’s two second period scores on runs of 37 and 3 yards. A Hartley two Wells pass conversion and Hartley’s end sweep added four more and the Buccs had a 32-0 halftime lead.
A 30-point third quarter was spearheaded by All-State Candidate Bob Hartley as the hard-driving fullback opened the second half with two quick touchdowns on power plays from the 7 and 50-yard markers. A pass play went incomplete on the first conversion try, but McMaken plunged for two points on the other to give Covington a 46-0 lead as the varsity turned the game over to the reserves, who kept the point progress with two more third period scores.
Warren Smith sliced over right tackle for 46 yards. Roger Looker skirted right end for points-after to move Covington in front 54-0, and minutes later the pattern reversed as Looker scampered 57 yards and Smith found the end zone on the conversion play to end Covington’s scoring.
Centerville, despite the score, gave a respectable performance, but flashed hot and cold the evening long. The Elks lone tally came with but three minutes remaining in the game when Halfback Long unvailed a 26-yard gallop and Poppelton plunged for the conversion that ended the game 62-8.
FROM THE PRESSBOX:
Covington registered 16 first downs, the Elks 6… the Buccaneers tossed six passes, completing three, while Centerville went to the air eight times and connected on two, there were no interceptions… Covington was penalized 30 yards, the Elks 20… the Buccs fumbled twice, lost the ball once and Centerville committed four bobbles and gave away two… Several colleges have shown interest in Irvin’s powerhouse, and for some members of the White Tide, their athletic career may still be in their infancy… time will tell – Adious.