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Scott County Takes Regional Title in Thriller
by Lyndsey Gough,posted Nov 22 2013 11:52PM
The temperatures were low but the spirits were high. Scott County took on Henry Clay on their home turf at Georgetown College for what was an evenly matched, high-intensity, battle to the end between these two teams. Coach McKee and the Scott County Cardinals emerged with the victory, but not without a fight from Henry Clay.
With 8:31 in the first Henry Clay marched down the field for Davion Jackson to score the first touchdown of the game on a 15-yard pass from Sammy Carter. Scott County quickly answered with a Noah Hughes scoring on a 4-yard run with 5:35 left in the first quarter. Scott County still trailed one point after a rare failed kick by Palmer Wood.
In the second quarter, Scott County’s Clay McKee scored on a 5-yard quarterback sneak with 2:16 left until the half, this time Ward nailed the extra kick and put Scott up 13-7 and in good position going into the half; or so they thought. 17 seconds later, Henry Clay’s standout running back answered with an 80-yard run to score, giving the Blue Devils a 1-point edge going into the locker room.
Coming into the second half Elijah Bell opened up with yet another 80-yard run 20 seconds in, putting Henry Clay up 21-13. With 9:16 on the clock in the third, Clay McKee’s rush attempt failed; but his arm did not. He launched a 57 yard pass to Keith Guy, but the two-point conversion failed, making the score 21-19. Palmer Ward hit a 34-yard field goal in windy conditions at 6:23 putting the Cardinals up for the first time in the second half, 22-21.
Henry Clay answered opening the fourth quarter, however, and took the lead back with another Jackson touchdown, leaving the score at 27-22. Late in the fourth quarter Scott County finally had the answer to the Henry Clay defense, with a 52-yard touchdown from Grayson Miller. Henry Clay had a quick answer with a 71-yard touchdown from Jackson with 5:03 left to play making the score 34-30. Scott had another answer with 4:43 left in a 63-yard run from Guy to make the score 37-34, where it would remain as Henry Clay had no answer for the Scott County defense.
Injuries were a huge factor in this game. #12, Scott Daniel, the freshman wide receiver for Scott County returned to the game in the second half with heavy taping after not playing three weeks due to a fractured tibia. On the other sideline, before halftime #54, big man Griffin Brixley went down and limped with help off the sideline favoring one of his ankles. He returned from the locker room in street clothes and ice around his ankle with crutches. Early in the second half, senior quarterback #7 Sammy Carter also went down with an apparent ankle injury. He too, returned to the sideline at some point with crutches.
Despite the loss, Elijah Bell had himself quite a night with 282 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Bell also had 4 punts for 124 yards and returned three kicks for 52 yards. Jackson had 171 yards and three rushing touchdowns and 22 receiving yards.
For Scott County, Thomas Daniel had 11 unassisted tackles and 4 assisted and four tackles for loss. And Keith Guy put up two touchdowns, one rushing and one receiving. Miller had himself a touchdown as well.
Both teams had very similar stat lines except in a few areas: Scott County had one interception for 22 yards, and Henry Clay had none. Henry Clay gave up 20 yards from 3 penalties, whereas Scott was 7-49. Henry Clay had the ball for 19:43, leaving Scott with the majority at 28:17. Henry Clay was 6-12 and 0-1 on third and fourth down conversions, and Scott was 2-10 and 2-3, converting when it was most crucial. Henry Clay scored both times they were in the red zone, Scott County scored three of four times, the big stop by Henry Clay coming in the first half.
After the game, Elijah Bell approached Coach McKee congratulating him on the win. McKee will coach Bell in a bluegrass all-star game after the season ends. McKee said he was proud of his team and school. They take on Louisville Male next weekend in the next round of the playoffs, but for now enjoy winning their regional title over Henry Clay.
The Bulldogs gave the Cardinals all they could handle but Scott County swept Dunbar in this regular season finale doubleheader. Also, on this night a bit of history. With the Scott County Boys victory, coach Billy Hicks offically become the winningest coach all time in high school basketball with win number 857. Congrats to coach Hicks!