, Corbin, KY

October 9, 2012

Gaining ground

The Times-Tribune

CORBIN — Week Seven of high school football is in the books and now it’s time to take a seat and look at what we learned this past week.

Player of the Week — For the second time this season, I’m going with the TEAM concept when it comes to the Player of the Week honors. Last week, Whitley County garnered the honors and this week it goes out to the Lynn Camp Wildcats. I really admire the fight first-year coach Phil Russell has instilled into this year’s version of the Wildcats. Lynn Camp has shown me a lot. After coming off a winless season in 2011 and suffering big losses to Whitley County, South Laurel and Madison Southern, the Wildcats responded with — a big district win over Berea. That’s a sign of good coaching and good players that won’t quit. Enjoy this week’s honor, Lynn Camp Wildcats, you deserve it.

Win No. 400 — How about them Yellow Jackets? Williamsburg made noise statewide Friday by capturing the football program’s 400th win by defeating rival Campbellsville with ease, 48-0.

Biggest surprise — I really thought South Laurel had a chance to beat Lincoln County on the road, but in the end, they suffered a 63-20 loss to the Patriots. The 63 points allowed is the most a Cardinal defense has allowed in a game since at least 1998 when the KHSAA started keeping stats. The loss also put a huge damper on South Laurel’s playoff hopes. Coming into the season many thought the Cardinals were not only playoff bound, but a solid pick to win their first district title since 1999.

Looking sharp — The Whitley County Colonels continue to flex their muscles in fine fashion. Jim Black’s squad captured their fourth win in a row and improved to 5-2 during the process by rolling up more than 400 yards on the ground during their win over Perry Central Friday. I’ve said it from Day One that this year’s Whitley County team is talented enough to make a deep run into postseason play.

Familiar Face — Former Lynn Camp coach David Mitchell was roaming the sidelines as the Perry Central Commodores Defensive Coordinator Friday against Whitley County. I asked photographer Darrin Spencer to get some pictures of Mitchell in action for a feature story I will be doing on Mitchell in the near future and I have to admit, it seemed odd seeing Mitchell in red and back colors instead of orange and black.

Making a statement — North Laurel’s chances of reaching the playoffs for the first time since the 2004 are even greater after the Jaguars’ 17-7 win over Southwestern Friday. Chris Larkey’s squad is a step closer to hosting its first playoff game since the 1994 season when the Jaguars hosted Henry Clay in a first round matchup. Friday’s game against Madison Southern will basically decide if North Laurel will be able to land a home playoff contest.

Rebound win — Steve Jewell’s Corbin Redhounds needed a district win in a bad way and they got it against McCreary Central, winning 64-6.

Taking a break — No teams will be off this week. Yep, that’s right, it’s going to be a busy Friday in the Tri-County. Corbin will be the only team playing at home with  Knox Central, Lynn Camp, North Laurel, South Laurel, Whitley County and Williamsburg each hitting the road.

Looking for win No. 400 — Williamsburg was off this past week, but will be back in action Friday with hopes of capturing the football program’s 400th victory — now that would be quite an accomplishment.

Biggest win this past week — This is a tough one. I could got with Lynn Camp’s win over Berea or  Whitley County’s win over Perry central, but I’m not. I’m going with North Laurel’s 17-7 defensive win over Southwestern. The Jaguars were trailing at halftime, but got a big game defensively and managed to get the big win.

Biggest game this week — Now this is another tough one. Almost every game this week is huge in one way or another. We all know what’s at stake between Corbin and Bell County. A Redhound win really puts a wrinkle into the district picture, giving Corbin, the Bobcats and Wayne County each one loss apiece. But a Corbin loss almost assures Steve Jewell’s a road playoff game and a No. 3 seed. The North Laurel/Madison Southern game has a lot at stake, too. A Jaguar win means North Laurel is almost guaranteed a home playoff game — a loss means a road playoff game. Whitley County’s contest with Harlan County is basically for the district crown. If the Colonels can grab a win against Black Bears, then they are one step closer to a district title. And, let’s not forget about Lynn Camp’s game against Campbellsville. A win over the Eagles will guarantee the Wildcats a home playoff game.

Tri-County Rankings for Oct. 8 - Oct. 12 —

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Knox Central remains unbeatend and remains at the No. 1 spot as well, while Williamsburg holds on to the No. 2 spot and Whitley County comes in at the three-spot. Corbin is No. 4 while North Laurel follows at No. 5 and South Laurel is No. 6 and Lynn Camp comes in at the No. 7 spot.

They said it — “We read the newspaper and saw what they said. They didn’t have any respect for us. They said don’t be deceived by North Laurel’s record, but I think they found out that we are a pretty good football team, regardless. Our defensive coaches did a tremendous job. They definitely outcoached the Southwestern team tonight, and held them to seven points.” — North Laurel coach Chris Larkey on his team’s 17-7 win over Southwestern.

“It’s great to get the 400th win. You know it’s really special because for the first time it ties all of the generations together and we were all part of this. Players from the 40s, 50s, 60s up until now, we all can say we were all a part of this. This win gives us all a lot of memories.” — Williamsburg coach Jerry Herron on Williamsburg’s football’s program’s 400th win.

“One of the keys for us was to control the clock, but I didn’t know we would be able to move the ball in such big chunks. That sort of played against us because they were getting the ball back a little faster than I thought they would, but we did a good job.” — Whitley County coach Jim Black after seeing his team hand Perry Central a 47-28 loss.

“We didn’t execute most of the game, but we pulled it out. I told these seniors this week that it was going to come down to the fourth quarter and we’d have to see who wanted it more. I guess we figured it out.” — Lynn Camp coach Phil Russell after his etam’s 28-26 district win over Berea,