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Lincoln County High School’s Falcons wrapped up their regular season in week nine with a 20-3 win on the road over Tullahoma.
The victory secures at least the second place spot in the District 8-AAA standings.
Currently, the Falcon are 6-4 overall and 5-1 in the district; Shelbyville (6-3) and 4-1; Franklin County (4-5) and 3-2; Columbia (4-5) and 2-3; Lawrence County (5-4) and 2-3; Tullahoma (4-5) and 2-3; Coffee County (0-9) and 0-5.
Lincoln County is idle in week 10. Friday night, Shelbyville travels to Lawrence County. A win by the Wildcats would give the Falcons first place in the district. Franklin County travels to Columbia and Tullahoma travels to Coffee County in the battle for the “Coffee Pot”.
“We wanted to manage the game from the opening kickoff,” Coach Don Thomas said about the match-up with the Wildcats. “They only had one sustained drive where they came away with the field goal in the first quarter, and we had a couple big penalties help keep that drive alive.
“Tullahoma has beat us a couple years in a row, and this is the first time for our seniors to get a win,” he added. “We played very solid as a unit – I’m proud of the cohesiveness and unification of them playing together.
“We’re getting back to being healthy,” Thomas continued. “We went in pads Thursday before the game to get the kids’ toughness back. We had a let down over fall break, and we’ve come back strong the last two weeks. We’re off next week – that’ll give us time to take care of some bumps and bruises, then we’ll see how the bracket draws out for the playoffs – it could be one of our league teams; we’ve got to get focused and ready.”
Friday night Tullahoma won the toss and took the ball the opening kickoff. The Falcons held the Wildcats to fourth and long in their first possession, forcing a punt. LCHS moved the ball to the Wildcats’ 39-yard line, but the drive stalled. Following the punt, Tullahoma started at the 5-yard line. LCHS was tagged with a pass interference and personal foul call as the Wildcats moved down the field. The Falcons made a defensive stand on 3rd down at their own 6-yard line, forcing a 25-yard field goal with 12 seconds remaining in the first quarter. Tullahoma was up 3-0 at the end of one.
Shelton Smith returned the following kickoff to the Wildcats’ 45-yard line. It took the Falcons 8 plays to score, despite back-to-back holding calls as Keller Monks connected with Brandon Gower from the five. Logan Wheat’s kick was good, and with 8:50 in the second, LCHS was up 7-3.
Lincoln County held the ‘Cats the following possession, forcing a punt. Josh Whitaker returned the ball 82 yards to the Tullahoma 10-yard line. Two plays later, August Hill pushed it in from the two, and Wheat’s kick was good. With 4:39 remaining in the first half, LCHS was up 14-3.
The Falcons got the ball the third quarter, and Jack Cooter took the kickoff to the 49-yard line. Eight plays later, Ryan Golden scored from the two. Logan Wheat’s kick was no good, and with 8:18 on the clock, LCHS was up 20-3.
From that point on, the Wildcats would not cross midfield, and the Falcons had the win.
LCHS finished with 12 first down, 236 yards rushing and 22 passing for a total of 258 yards.
Keller Monks was 3 for 3, all to Brandon Gower, for 22 yards and a score.
Ryan Golden had 20 carries for 87 yards and a score; August Hill, 13 for 68 yards and a score; Jack Cooter, 7 for 36 yards; Tommy Sanders, 6 for 17 yards; Josh Whitaker, 1 for 20 yards; Brandon Gower, 1 for 3 yards; and Keller Monks, 1 rush for 5 yards and 1 fumble.
Defensively, the Falcons gave up 7 first downs, 84 yards rushing and 41 passing for a total of 125 yards. Jack Cooter led with 12 tackles; Robert Swart, 6; Quamaine Humphrey, 5; Xavier Schleuter, 4; Ryan Hall and Tyler Bennett, 3; Josh Whitaker and Jarrett Johnson, 2; Shelton Smith, Jacob Lamb and T.J. Crabtree had 1.
Logan Wheat punted 3 times for 97 yards – two were inside the 20-yard line.