Logan’s 142-0 win in ‘23 revisited

Logan Banner: ‘Opening football game was a farce’

By Paul Adkins - [email protected]

LOGAN, W.Va. — In one of the most famous smackdowns in college football history, Georgia Tech once beat tiny Cumberland College (Tenn.) 222-0 in 1916.

Here in Logan, the Wildcats had their own beatdown, a little-known 142-0 thrashing of Chattaroy during the leatherheads era in 1923.

It was the third season of football at Logan High School and the rout remains to be, to no one’s surprise, the biggest blowout in school history.

Logan ended up scoring a whopping 21 touchdowns in the game and racked up an unheard of 1,208 yards to just 38 for Chattaroy.

The Wildcats led 27-0 after the first quarter and 67-0 at halftime. The lead swelled to 80-0 after three before Logan ran across 62 fourth-quarter points to finish off the scoring.

The following is a reprint of the Logan Banner’s 1923 account of the game (writer unknown as no byline was printed):


1923 Logan Banner article:

‘Opening Football Game Was a Farce’

A frolicsome overture to the 1923 grid season was played at the delicate, weak-stringed instrument, flying the colors of Chattaroy High by the heavy handed foot ball squads of Logan High School, among the pastoral environs of Whitman Park last Saturday.

The music ran into hectic tempo, and doleful discords and its merit as an entertainment rested entirely in its volume, which rose and swelled to 124 for Logan and 0 for Chattaroy.

Crowds of the strong and the fair turned out to witness the season’s initial football spectacle. A beaming sun shone down from a perfect blue sky, a sun, which, for the season of the year, was difficult to dress to. Most of the audience found it comfortable to adhere to the tight summer frocking, yet, there were some who turned to the chic autumnal sport wear. These latter probably regretted the sacrifice, after standing first on one foot and then the other, watching the progress of the game.

Coach Emsweller, following the rules of mathmatical progression, started his first string eleven. Wilcox, the Logan quarterback, had the honor of booting the first ball for his alma mater this season. And he made a pretty fair boot of it, kicking the pigskin to the Chattaroy 20 yard line. Stout, of Chattaroy, recovered the ball. Attempting to gain thru the line, the light eleven was pushed back five yards. Davis kicked to Logan’s 40 yard line, Wilcox recovering. Logan lost five yards. Then the Logan backs, Shelton and Browning, started on a rampage that was to be carried on by the backs of the succeeding second and third Logan squads. Sheldon circled right and for a run of 45 yards for the first touchdown of the season. Wilcox failed to kick goal.

Chattaroy got the ball on Logan’s kickoff, and after being thrown for a couple of losses, a forward pass was attempted, which was only exceeded in crudeness by the attempted drop kick of Davis. The ball ricochetted from the ground about fifty yards from the kicker and bounded to the side line. Shelton did another marathon from his 40 yard line for another touchdown. Wilcox kicked goal.

The Chattaroy team was only taking up formation to be exploded all over the terrain by every guest of the Logan forces. Their manner of playing was remindful of sheep before a pack of devouring wolves with here and there the shadow of defiance from some of the flock and a marked attitude of counter destruction on the part of the quarterback Stout who played an admirable game from the start to the finish. He, like the other quail, would no sooner get his flock coaxed to better efforts until the swooping hawk would blast his endeavors.

While the opposition was practically nill, the Logan squad should accept the lesson that was given them and tighten up the screws of their clutches, for fumbles in some of the games they will be called on to play may prove their undoing. Coach Emsweller will probably see to this, seeing that his squad is not immune from the dreadful football virus.

It looked like Shelton was away for another six points. He was running a diagonal course across an open field when he was interrupted in the shadow of the goal posts by the intrepid Stout. A five yard gain through the line and an end run by Browning eliminated the more points went to the growing score of Logan.

Davis kicked off for Chattaroy and captain Frazier recovered on his 30 yard line. Browning, carrying the ball around the right was boarded by Hoffstetter and ridden until their legs got tangled and Browning took a tumble. Fifteen yards was the distance that Chattaroy halfback rode. Logan was penalized ten yards for holding. Provoked at the slowness of the game Shelton grew impatient and ran loose again for 50 yards and another touchdown. Wilcox kicked goal.

Logan took the ball on Chattaroy’s kickoff on the 35 yard line. Employing a shift a reach was made in the Chattaroy line, through which Browning marched across the field for a touchdown. Those things were beginning to be so common that the fans on the side lines quit calling for touchdowns and began to look forward to seeing some one of the players knocked out as a means of nourishing their opposites for a thrill.

Chattaroy never got closer than 20 yards to the goal during the whole game, and with their waning forces the Logan outfits grew stronger. At first the Logan team was scoring at the rate of two points a minute and by the time the game was completed they had raised this number to three and would have been clipping them off at a greater rate had not the game terminated.

The second team went in before the end of the first half. Very little change was made in the scoring. The march quickly became a rout with Lilly and White in the stellar roles of touchdown manufacturers. Lilly, before he was extracted on account of an injured ankle, managed to outdo his closest rival, Shelton, for scoring honors. Whether it was due to the Chattaroy team being weaker when he went against them or whether he was faster in getting the ball across the field is the only reasons that can be conjured up for the difference in scoring records of Shelton and Lilly.

With the coming of the second half came the coming of the third and the last football team that Coach Emsweller had on hand. The total tonage of each team grew less as they went from the first to third. The third was lighter, but very little difference could be noticed in their playing and that of their predecessors. It was a walk away for them as well as for the first. The only difference that might have been noted by the casual observer was that they were smaller, and bore different numbers. It was practically a whole new team, mostly freshmen. Mitchell, a 120 pounder and Hunter another lightweight, did better than they were called upon to do. They wouldn’t have had to exert, or extend themselves but they did, and thereby hangs the tale of their long scoring.


Carey le Spry

Barber lt Lowe

Henderson lg Giles

White, M c Scott

Brammer rg Millard

Frazier rt Lester

Campbell re Smith

Wilcox, J. qb Stout

Shelton hb Hoffsteter

Gentry hb Davis

Browning, C. fb T. Stepp

Summary—Touchdowns: Sheldon 5; Lilly 5; C. Browning 3; J. White 3; Hunter 2; DeFabio 1; Vitez 1; Carey 1. Total touchdowns, 21.

Points from touchdowns: Wilcox (place kicks) 3; J. White (drop kicks) 6; Lilly (drop kicks) 2; Shelton (drop kick) 1; Mitchell to DeFabio (pass) 1; Whit to Lilly (pass) 1; Lilly to Shelton (pass) 1; Total points from touchdowns 16.

Substitutions — Logan: Chafin for Carey; A. Browning for Barber; Hunter for Henderson; Ghiz for M. White; Jones for Brammer; Flynn for Frazier; Holland for Campbell; Lilly for Woolcox; Mitchell for Lilly; R. Woolcox for Shelton; Wysong for R. Woolcox; Copley for Holland; DeFabio for Tabor; Vitez for Ghiz; J. White for Browning.

Score by Quarters

Logan 27 40 13 62 — 142

Chattaroy 0 0 0 0 — 0

First Downs by Quarters

Logan 10 10 10 13 — 43

Chattaroy 0 1 0 2 — 3

Yards Gained by Quarters

Logan 253 344 155 456 — 1208

Chattaroy 2 11 0 25 — 38

Total Individual Gains

Lilly 254 yards — longest runs, 60, 50, 50 and 40 yards; Shelton 249 yards — longest runs, 55, 53, 41 yards; J. White 185 yards — longest runs, 50, 46. A. Hunter, 58; A. Browning 53; Vitez, 40; DeFabio 39; W. Mitchell 52; Carey 32; Woolcox 26; Hager 20; Gentry 20 yards

Referee, Hutchinson.

Umpire, Bolden

Time of quarters, 12 minutes each.

Logan Banner: ‘Opening football game was a farce’

By Paul Adkins

[email protected]

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