Aside from a few fumbles and special team miscues, Scott County looked about as dominant as its fans could hope for in a 47-20 rout of Tates Creek in the first game of the Kickoff Classic on Friday night.
In true Cardinals fashion, three players finished with 100 or more yards on the ground. Brice Fryman (108), Caleb Demus (107) and Jacob Burton (100) paced Scott County. Kendrick Hamilton, who initiated a scoring avalanche with a 27-yard touchdown run early in the first quarter, ended with 97 yards on 10 carries.
Demus and Burton each rushed for two scores in the first half to give Scott County a 34-7 halftime lead. Tates Creek didn’t score until the 9:58 mark of the second quarter, when Jaden Baird made a diving catch for a 25-yard touchdown pass from junior Cam Workman, the heir apparent to Peyton Burke.
Cards Coach Jim McKee didn’t want to focus on the mistakes his team made in his 25th season opener as a head coach.
“You try not to be irritated with the mistakes we made and be happy with the things we did well,” McKee said.
Those things that Scott County has done well for so many years.
“We’re not gonna change much,” McKee said. “ … We have some core beliefs that we believe in and we’ve gotta believe in those things.”
Scott County quarterback Josh Davis was 7-for-12 for 146 yards and a TD throw to Fryman. McKee dismissed the notion that he might “open up” the playbook to toss the ball around a little more.
“What’s ‘open up’ mean?,” McKee said. “Does that mean you win? Here’s what my discussions are: I want to win. And I want to find the things that the other team gives us.
“It’s got to be about our team and not how many times we throw or don’t throw. We’ll have some Friday nights where we’re 2-for-4 and other nights where we’re 9-for-13.”
Creek had a great deal of success with its return game. Laron Warner accounted for 155 yards on kick returns alone, including a big chunk on a 75-yard scamper out of halftime which set up a Workman TD pass to Darryl Bell.
The Commodores were less effective elsewhere. They managed just 230 yards of total offense to 631 yards for Scott County. Workman finished 9-for-21 with 233 yards and three TDs, the final an 89-yard completion to Jackson Beerman midway through the fourth quarter.
At some point, Creek Coach Antoine Sims said, players must take more pride in the work they put in to prepare for teams that, like Scott County, come out and do just what they expected them to do.
“We’ve gotta figure out how to make them break down,” Sims said. “We had our chances throughout the football game. At a certain point it’s got to mean something to our kids. … As coaches we’ve got to get back to practice and get it done. No ifs, ands or buts about it.”
▪ Additional photos from the Tates Creek-Scott County game
▪ Coverage of Friday’s Lafayette-Paul Laurence Dunbar game
▪ Scores, line scores and highlights from games around Kentucky