"When you give up a score in 27 seconds, we're in for a long night, and we were, and it was chiefly because of [Tucker]," Midkiff said. "He's a tremendous player, a tremendous athlete. He had a good game tonight. He ran on us, he threw on us, did a good job."
Nitro responded on its ensuing possession with a nine-play, 50-yard drive capped by a 2-yard touchdown run from junior running back Nick Brown. The point-after attempt failed as Ripley retained a 7-6 advantage.
Tucker later added his second rushing touchdown with a 1-yard run. Following a fumble recovery, Ripley created another score from Nitro's miscue. With the first play of the second quarter, Trevor Tucker connected with receiver Nathan Tucker for a 22-yard touchdown pass to go ahead 21-6.
Later in the second quarter, Trevor Tucker threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Kade Harrison. Hamrick provided the final score of the first half with a 12-yard touchdown run.
Nitro standout running back Brayden Underwood carried just one time for 4 yards in the first quarter, as Brown took the bulk of the rushing responsibilities. Brown carried 10 times for 51 yards, including a 2-yard touchdown in the first quarter. For the first half, Brown finished with 70 rushing yards, while Underwood had 27 on eight carries.
Ripley gained 224 rushing yards with three touchdowns in the first half on 20 carries. Tucker additionally completed 7 of 9 passes for another 131 yards and two scores.
Brown finished the game with 23 carries for 174 yards and two touchdowns for Nitro. Underwood tallied 58 yards on 16 carries.
Nitro next plays at Winfield Friday, while Ripley hosts South Charleston.