By Denis House / The Endzone Staff
CORBIN—The old saying that defense wins games was proven Friday night as Corbin's defense forced eight Casey County turnovers in a 49-13 romp.
"The biggest thing is we came out and did what we needed to do," Corbin coach Steve Jewell said. "Our defense played well, and our offense did at times. But we've got to get better in the passing game."
Six of those turnovers came in the first half as the Rebels (1-8) threw two interceptions and fumbled the ball away four times. The other times they had the ball in the first half resulted in two punts and the half.
Meanwhile, Corbin (8-2) scored on five of its first six possessions of the first half to build a 35-0 lead at intermission.
Casey County opened the game with quarterback Breece Hayes hooking up with Kyle Eads for a 15-yard gain to move the ball to the 50. That would pretty much be the extent of their offense in the first half.
Following the Rebels first punt, it took Corbin all of two plays to score. Taking over on the 34, Jake Coppock's first running attempt resulted in a seven-yard loss. His next would be a 73-yard score with 9:35 left in the first. When Tulio Canineu added the point after, the Redhounds were up, 7-0.
On Casey's next possession, on first down, Hayes was intercepted by Austin O'Neil, giving the Redhounds the ball on their own 38. This drive would be one of the few that Corbin failed to get any points out of, as they punted the ball away.
Casey took over on the 20, but two plays later, Hayes was picked off by Dylan Adams, who returned it 24 yards for what looked like an apparent touchdown. But the Redhounds were flagged for an illegal block in the back, giving them the ball on the 16 with 5:53 left in the quarter. Three plays later, Cai Jackson carried it in from four-yards out, and with the point after good, the lead now stood at 14-0.
Another Casey possession, and Rebel turnover, this time when Jackson hit Hayes, forcing him to fumble, which was recovered by Kavin Mindee.
That turnover turned into seven more Corbin points when Coppock took the ball around the right side for 10 yards and the score to make it 21-0 with 1:54 left. That's how the first quarter would end.
The Rebels again fumbled the ball away on their next possession, this time Dalton Anderson recovered to give Corbin the ball on the 30. Six plays later, Tanner Powers bulled his way over from one-yard out to push the lead to 28-0 at the 8:51 mark.
On the ensuing kickoff, Wyatt Bishop fielded the ball on the 19 and found daylight to the Corbin 38, where Adams made a touchdown-saving tackle. Hayes fumbled the ball away on first down, and Corbin took over on the 42.
Three straight runs by Jackson, two to the right and one to the left, moved the ball to the 38. Coppock then raced down the left side to the 15 only to have the play called back due to another block in the back penalty, giving Corbin the ball on the 25. Powers took the handoff and raced 25 yards for the score and a 35-0 lead. Casey would fumble the ball away one more time in the half, which O'Neil recovered, but Corbin couldn't convert this turnover into points and the lead was still 35-0 at the half.
Coppock took the opening kickoff of the second half and raced 85 yards for the score and pushed the lead to 42-0, which meant a running clock.
Casey fumbled on its first possession of the second half, then Hayes was intercepted on the Rebels' second possession. The interception led to another Corbin score, this time when Tucker Jewell scored from 17 yards out to make it 49-0.
Casey added two late scores, on a 27-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Luna and the second on a 34-yard run by Bishop, but it was too little, too late, as Corbin rolled, 49-13.