Staff photos by Paul Henry

Lincoln County High School’s Falcons dropped their final game of the regular season, going down to Summit, 21-13, with a steady rain most of the game.

But, despite the loss, LCHS finished in the fourth spot of Region 5-5A action and will advance to the playoffs for the first time since 2015.

In the standings, Page finished at 6-0; Shelbyville, 5-1; Summit, 4-2; Lincoln County, 3-3; Franklin County, 2-4; Columbia, 1-5; and White County, 0-6.

Friday night’s game decided the third and fourth seeds of playoff action. This week, the Falcons will travel to take on Hillsboro Friday night, but the game will be played at Hillwood High School in Nashville due to stadium construction. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.

Hillsboro is the top seed of Region 5-6A with a 4-1 record, followed by Beech, Gallatin, Hillwood, Glencliff and Hunters Lane. The region loss for the Burros came in the third game of the season, going down to Gallatin, 26-18.

In the Falcons’ Friday night match-up with Summit, the Spartans brought one of the toughest running games in the region, posting nearly 2,700 yards and averaging 7 yards a carry. It would be the second half before the Falcons got control of the line of scrimmage.

“I have to say I’m mighty proud of the guys,” Coach Tim Johnson said. “We didn’t bring our ‘A’ game every game, but we showed a lot of heart. I saw a lot of maturing throughout the season. It wasn’t pretty all the time, but we consistently finished with an opportunity to win; really, I think at the end of the day that’s all we can ask.

“Summit runs a traditional Wing T, and they do a great job of it,” he added. “We were down three defensive linemen this week so we had to play some guys that didn’t have a lot of snaps, but they fought their tails off and made some good things happen. But, I think the lack of depth was a factor tonight.

“We were still fighting and plugging in the second half,” he continued, “but the way it turned out, the fumble just before the half made a difference in the ball game. We’ve got to learn from those things.

“My hat’s off to our seniors, a senior bunch that hadn’t had a lot of success their sophomore and junior years, but they have worked hard in the off season and been great leaders showing a lot of heart

“The playoffs is a whole new season. I’m really proud of our kids the way they stepped up. There were several games during the season where the playoffs were on the line.”

In Friday night’s game, Summit scored on a 41-yard run in the first quarter and a 21-yard romp in the second. Late in the second period, the Falcons had the opportunity to pick up some momentum but coughed up the ball at the one yard line in the final seconds of the quarter. LCHS was down 14-0 at the break.

Lincoln County had the opening possession of the second half but went three and out. The Spartans started at their own 23 yard line. Twelve plays later, Summit was up 21-0.

In their next possession, LCHS started at their own 28 yard line. Six plays later, West Jenkins pushed it in from the 2 yard line. With difficult field conditions, Reid Hardiman missed on the PAT, and LCHS was on the board, trailing 21-6.

In the final frame, Tucker Webb recovered a fumble by the Spartans at their own 40 yard line. Kept alive by a big fourth down conversion by A.J. Alcorn, West Jenkins later scored from the 2 yard line. Hardiman was good on the PAT, and LCHS trailed 21-13 with 2:03 remaining in the game.

Summit ran the clock out in their next possession to finish with the win.