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Colonels edge Bearcats 10-7 for title

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By Mickey Patterson

BUCKNER – There were plenty of big plays to go around, but none bigger than Jake Weigel’s.

Weigel nailed a 23-yard field goal with 3:06 left in the game Friday to help the Oldham County Colonels beat Anderson County 10-7 and win the district title.

“I didn’t think about it,” Weigel said. I just concentrated on hitting it hard and straight. “I knew I had it when it came off my foot.”

After Weigel’s kick, OCHS turned to its defense which continued its bend but never break effort to hold Anderson County’s high-powered offense at bay and hand the Bearcats their first loss of the season.

“Our defense just played it’s heart out tonight,” OCHS coach Matt Brown said. “We held a great team that came in here averaging 42 points a game to just seven points. That’s just a great effort.”

Following Weigel’s kick, Anderson County drove to the OCHS 16 forcing a Colonels’ timeout with 43.6 seconds left.

The OCHS defense responded, on the first play after the timeout, OCHS’ Zach Littlefield burst through the Anderson line to sack Bearcats’ quarterback Jacob Russell for a 12-yard loss forcing an Anderson County timeout.

“He (Littlefield) had been doing a great job all night of coming in off the edge to pressure Russell,” Brown said. “That was just a huge play, it really changed the momentum of the game.”

On  second down, Littlefield and Austin Fletcher chased Russell through the backfield forcing him to throw a pass out of the endzone.

Anderson tried to pass again on third down, but the pass to the left side of the end zone fell incomplete as OCHS defenders Kiley Obradovich and Brandon Cook had the Anderson receiver smothered.

On fourth down, Russell was again forced to scramble under pressure from the OCHS defensive line and his pass to the endzone was high and wide giving the Colonels the ball with 13.9 seconds left.

“We had a lot of big plays by our defense all night,” Brown said. “There were several on that last drive from the sack to the coverage.”

The Colonels took an early lead with a score in the first quarter. After stopping Anderson, the Colonels fought through a first down clipping penalty to drive 78 yards.

Facing a first and 24, Tyler Oldham got the drive going with an 18-yard gain around right end. After a short dive in the middle from Brett Leary, quarterback Chase Hamby took a keeper around the left side for 25 yards.

Two plays later, Hamby hit the left side for a gain of eight. Facing a fourth and five, the Colonels came up with a big play when Hamby hit Oldham for a 13-yard swing pass to the Anderson 13.

On third down, Oldham went off right tackle spinning and bouncing off three Anderson defenders for a 15-yard scoring run that gave the Colonels the lead.

Through the rest of the half, the OCHS defense, keyed by several big hits from linebacker Kirk Yepko, kept Anderson in check.

The Bearcats, however, opened the second half with an exhibition of their potent offense.

Starting from their own 36, Anderson drove relentlessly downfield to tie the game.

Russell opened the drive by hitting Ben Walker with a nine-yard pass to the left side.

After an encroachment penalty on OCHS, Walker and Dustin Combs busted off tackle plays for 11 total yards.

Russell hit Hunter Lilly with a 12-yard pass in the right flat before the Colonels were hit with a personal foul/roughing the passer penalty that moved the ball to the OCHS 13.

Combs hit the middle of the line twice to push the ball to the three where he took it over off the left side to tie the game.

The Colonels’ winning drive started with just over 10 minutes left in the game.

Starting at the 20, OCHS caught a break with a face masking call on the Bearcats. On third and 12, Hamby hit Obradovich on a slant pattern over the middle for a 13-yard gain.

Hamby followed that with a drop over the middle to fullback Dylan Sims that went for 24 yards.

OCHS came up with another big fourth down conversion when Hamby hit Oldham over the middle with a 22 yard pass with Oldham laying out for a diving catch.

OCHS stopped themselves two plays later with a holding and unsportmanlike conduct penalty on the same play that pushed the ball back to the Anderson County 34.

The Colonels, however, rebounded with Hamby hitting Obradovich over the middle again for 20 yards.

Oldham then took a direct snap from center and gained 10 more yards over the right side to set up Weigel’s field goal.

“People are stacking the line on us right now but our passing is getting better every week,” Brown said. “It will continue to get better with time as Chase gets more and more comfortable back there. I thought tonight we did just enough to be successful. Chase thew a couple of good balls when we needed them and Kiley and Tyler both came up with a couple of big catches on that last drive.”

The win gives the Colonels, 6-3 overall and 4-0 in the district, the district title and a chance to host in the first and second round of the playoffs.

Anderson fell to 8-1 overall and 3-1 in the district.

The Colonels close the season at 7:30 p.m. Friday when they host Shelby County.

 

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