(All kickoffs at 7:30 p.m.unless noted.)
Danville at Lexington Christian
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Kickoff: 7 p.m.
Radio: WJMM-FM 99.1
Records: Danville 6-2 (beat Middlesboro 64-14 last week); LCA 3-5 (lost to Somerset 37-6)
Danville 'D': After a disappointing loss at Somerset two weeks ago, Danville reasserted itself against Middlesboro. The Admirals' defense set the tone. Middlesboro had minus 27 net yards on the ground and its potent passing attack was kept in check.
Looking for 'O': LCA's offense has been a work in progress. The Eagles are averaging only 74 yards rushing per game, and while they've improved their passing attack to where it's averaging about 150 yards, they still have twice as many interceptions (16) as TDs (8). Somerset picked off five LCA passes last week.
Henry Clay at Bryan Station
Radio: WVLK-FM 101.5
Records: Henry Clay 3-6 (beat Dunbar 49-6); Bryan Station 5-3 (lost to Scott County 41-13).
Mr. Offense: Since stepping into a lead role at running back three games into the season, Davion "D.J." Jackson has been Henry Clay's main weapon. He's 132 yards shy of 1,000 yards. Jackson ran for 225 yards and a TD against Dunbar last week.
The Defenders: Bryan Station junior Everett Talbert continues to impress as one of the top linebackers around. In last week's loss to Scott County, Talbert had 10 tackles, giving him 60 this season, including 12 for losses. Coach Craig Yeast calls Talbert a can't-miss Division I prospect. The Defenders will probably be without QB Ora Johnson, who suffered a concussion early in the second half against Scott County.
Lafayette at Tates Creek
Roy Walton Bowl
Radio: WLAP-AM 630
Records: Lafayette 6-3 (lost to Madison Central 26-7); Tates Creek 3-6 (lost to Clark County 34-14)
Spinning wheels: Lafayette's ground game, led by Bubba Johnson, had lots of traction in the first six games of the season as it averaged 185 yards rushing. But the Generals haven't gotten much from the run the last three weeks, averaging just 74 yards a game. In last week's loss to Madison Central, Lafayette's offense was also hobbled by five turnovers and an injury to QB Jeremy Smith.
Butterfingers: Turnovers have been a bugaboo for Tates Creek the last couple years, and it was the case last week at Clark County. In one stretch of the second half, the Commodores made turnovers on five consecutive possessions. Tates Creek's defense did a creditable job, limiting Clark County to 216 yards (none passing), but the Commodores' offense didn't do its part.
Lexington Catholic at Marion County
Radio: WMJR-AM 1380; WMJR-FM 94.9
Records: Lexington Catholic 7-1 (didn't play last week); Marion County 3-5 (lost to Boyle County 58-14)
Grounded: Marion County's running attack generates most of its offense. Jeremy Mattingly and Austin Turner have combined for 1,300 yards and 12 TDs rushing, although they were kept in check by Boyle County last week.
Bolin 'em over: Junior QB Kyle Bolin's passing puts the punch in LexCath's offense. Over the past two seasons he's thrown for 4,300 yards and 28 TDs. This year his prime targets are Adam Bush and David Bouvier, who between them have 74 catches for 1,100 yards and 13 TDs.
Scott Co. at Paul Laurence Dunbar
Records: Scott County 8-0 (beat Bryan Station 41-13); Dunbar 0-8 (lost to Henry Clay 49-6)
Dealing defense: Scott County's offense gets a lot of attention because it's averaging 47 points a game. But the Cards' defense deserves equal notice. It has forced 22 turnovers, allowed opponents to convert on third down only about 16 percent of the time (13 of 83), and has given only two first-half TDs all season. Jordan Kindred and Damon Gray are the leading tacklers.
Long shot: Dunbar, on a 16-game losing streak, figures to be overmatched by unbeaten and sixth-ranked Scott County. The Cards have owned this rivalry in recent years. They've beaten Dunbar five years in a row by a combined scored of 188-28.
Top state games
Belfry at Pike County Central: If Belfry beats the Hawks, Philip Haywood becomes the state's all-time winningest coach.
Highlands at Cincinnati Elder: Highlands takes 13-game win streak to Elder, which is on a six-game skid that began with a 56-7 loss to Trinity.
Johnson Central at Ashland Blazer: Ashland tries to contain Golden Eagles' J.J. Jude, who is 319 yards shy of state career rushing record.
AROUND THE STATE
Lions find roar
Vanceburg was a lively town last Friday night when Lewis County's football team returned from its first-ever victory over Russell that clinched the Lions' first district title since 1985. "It was pretty noisy on the bus ride home," Coach Josh Hughes said. "The fire trucks met us when we entered the county, and police vehicles drove us through town." At one point, the players got off the bus to shake hands and accept congratulations from fans who had gathered at McDonald's.
Lewis County rarely has anything to cheer about in football. The Lions have never won a playoff game in the program's 42-year history, and this will be their first winning season since 1988.
Hughes knows the futility from personal experience. When he played for Lewis County in the late 1990s, it won six games in four years.
The Lions are roaring this season, though.
Jonny Everman, a senior fullback/defensive end, is the team's leader. Cody Lawhun, Mike Mustard and Dalton Carver are also part of Lewis County's solid defensive front that's backed up by middle linebacker Caleb Bolander.
"I knew we had a chance to be good this year because we have a group of seniors who care about each other and work hard," Hughes said. "But I wouldn't have believed we could beat Mason County and Russell in the same year. That's still kind of surreal."