Bryan Station registered its biggest football victory in 15 years by upsetting defending Class 6A champion Scott County 28-23 Friday night.
The Defenders, who were competitive in losses to state powers St. Xavier and Highlands early in the season, ended Scott County's 22-game winning streak.
"We faced St. X and Highlands in true tests but lost," Bryan Station senior linebacker Greg Gerton said. "That got us ready for tonight. We weren't going to let it happen three times."
Bryan Station ended the Cardinals' 22-game winning streak against Lexington competition. The Defenders also halted a 13-game losing skid against Scott County that dated back to 1999 when they were state runners-up.
Never miss a local story.
Bryan Station junior quarterback Andre Davis threw four touchdown passes to Tequan Claitt.
"Tequan was the man tonight," Davis said. "He led us and kept us on our feet."
Davis also credited the Defenders' defense: "Spectacular. They made big plays all night."
Devon Key, a junior defensive back, made one of the biggest plays.
Bryan Station trailed 23-21 and Scott County had the ball early in the fourth quarter. Cards quarterback Clay McKee, running the option, tried to pitch the ball to a trailing running back.
But Key was there to snag McKee's pitch at the Scott County 43. The Defenders capitalized on the turnover, with Davis hitting Claitt with a 19-yard TD pass that proved to be the game-winner.
Key said he saw the play earlier in the night, so when he saw it again, "I knew I was going to get the ball."
Scott County, the top running team in the state, rushed for 394 yards. Three players topped 100 yards — Theo Price (174 yards, one TD), Noah Hughes (129 yards, 2 TDs) and Keith Guy (110 yards).
But the Cards had three turnovers, and four times Bryan Station's defense stopped them in fourth-and-short yardage situations.
Bryan Station Coach Frank Parks was thrilled with his team's overall performance.
"It's unbelievable how far we've come in a short time."
Davis finished the night 19 of 39 passing for 249 yards, four TDs and two interceptions. Claitt had eight catches for 124 yards and four scores.
Shane Preston, Mahari Sturgis, Chris Jackson, Key and Gerton led the Bryan Station defense.
The game had a chaotic ending.
Bryan Station was backed up deep in its own territory in the closing seconds. On fourth down, D'Andre Mack ran back into the end zone, and everybody figured he was taking an intentional safety. Instead, he came out of the end zone and was knocked out of bounds at the 11-yard line.
So with five seconds left, Scott County got the ball with a chance to win.
McKee floated a pass that was knocked down at the goal line, and the Bryan Station players rushed the field in celebration as the clock ran out. But the officials blew their whistles, cleared the field and put :01.5 back on the clock.
Scott County couldn't convert, however, as McKee's pass to the middle of the end zone was knocked away.
Cards Coach Jim McKee was gracious in defeat.
"A lot of times when you lose you're quick to figure out all the things you did wrong when you need to be quick to give your opponent credit," he said.
"Bryan Station did the right thing in scheduling Highlands and St. X because they weren't in awe tonight."
Bryan Station 28, Scott County 23
Scott County 7 2 14 0—23
Bryan Station 7 0 7 14—28
BS—Tequan Claitt 11 pass from Andre Davis (Anthony Lopez kick). SC—Theo Price 20 run (Tyler Dummer kick). SC—Safety (holding on Bryan Station in end zone). SC—Noah Hughes 3 run (Dummer kick). BS—Claitt 3 pass from Davis (Lopez kick). SC—Hughes 1 run (Dummer kick). BS—Claitt 20 pass from Davis (Lopez kick). BS—Claitt 19 pass from Davis (Lopez kick).
Records—Scott County 7-1; Bryan Station 6-2