What happened in the 10th week of the Kentucky high school football season? Here are five observations:
1.) Real-deal Danville
The Admirals completed their first undefeated regular season since 1994 in impressive fashion, rallying from a 21-7 hole in the second quarter to take a 44-28 decision at Lexington Christian Academy. Danville handed LCA its first loss and took the top playoff seed for Class 2A, District 7.
Lexington Christian last season recovered from a double-digit deficit at Danville to extend what would end up being an undefeated regular season. Turnovers troubled the Admirals then; this year a timely interception as LCA looked to go ahead 28-7 ignited a fire for the visitors.
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“The same kind of thing happened last year. We were up 26-7 with the ball in our first game, and we fumbled, and it kind of turned the momentum,” Danville Coach Clay Clevenger said. “Tanner (Ford) made a good break on the ball, and it was a break that we needed for sure.”
The Admirals will have a bye week before the playoffs get underway on Nov. 3. Clevenger said it couldn’t come at a better time for the Ads.
“As long as we don’t get a little bit too happy and feel like we’ve arrived, then I think we can still keep getting better,” Clevenger said.
2.) Wounded Eagles
Two key players in LCA skill group rotation, Ryan Stucky and Wade Drake, were on the sidelines recovering from lingering injuries and Wyatt Southall, a senior lineman, suffered a leg injury near the end of the second quarter. Eagles Coach Ethan Atchley after the game said he hadn’t received a prognosis on Southall but that it didn’t appear as bad as his staff initially believed.
“It’s positive when a trainer comes with a smile on his face,” Atchley said.
Atchley put himself at fault for defensive lapses that allowed Danville to score twice in the final six minutes of the second quarter to tie the game at 21-all before halftime. He referenced a 4th and 1 play on which he believed the Admirals would punt trailing 21-7; the ball went to senior running back Donlevy Harris, who instead dashed for a 58-yard TD with 2:46 left in the first half.
“We’ve gotta get stops on defense and this one’s on me,” Atchley said. “I made a bad judgment call on subbing to special teams and so, hopefully, I’ll get better and I’ll learn from it and be ready to go here next time. I let my kids down.”
Two previously undefeated teams – Johnson Central and Simon Kenton – fell on Friday.
Freshman Colby Coburn caught a long touchdown pass to give Ashland Blazer a 21-18 lead over Johnson Central with 2:37 left in the game. The Tomcats held on for their first victory against the Golden Eagles since 2011 and locked up the No. 1 seed in Class 4A, District 8.
4.) Cards country
Scott County closed out its regular season with a 48-21 shellacking of Pleasure Ridge Park, against whom they had a running clock in effect after 18 minutes of game time.
PRP coming into the season was considered a threat to contend in Louisville but has lost three of its last five. Scott County handed the Panthers their worst home loss of the season.
The Cardinals finished 8-0 against Kentucky competition in the regular season, their only losses coming at home against Cincinnati Moeller and at Cincinnati La Salle. They’ll have a bye week before hosting Clark County in the first round of the Class 6A playoffs.
A much-hyped showdown between Bowling Green and South Warren, who met for the first time on Friday, didn’t yield much drama. The Purples shut out the Spartans after the first quarter and scored a 43-7 home victory thanks to five forced turnovers.