Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local Sports

November 23, 2013

Rams win first region football title (VIDEO)

Raceland shuts down Pikeville, 14-3, for trip to state semifinals

RACELAND — Defense stole the show from two explosive offenses in a Class A quarterfinal showdown.

And Raceland’s defensive unit sparkled brightest, bottling up second-ranked Pikeville for a 14-3 victory Friday and the school’s first regional football title.

The Rams yielded a meager 33 yards in the second half against a team that came in averaging 48.8 points on the season.

“We played our best,” said senior defensive end Alex Risner, who helped spearhead Raceland’s stingy performance. “We just gave it 110 percent every play and finally got a regional championship.”    

Playing on a windy night and rain-soaked field at Rams Stadium, the defenses took over early in a matchup of high-powered attacks.

The only scoring of the first half came on Pikeville junior LJ Allara’s 29-yard field goal early in the second quarter.

The Panthers’ defense kept Raceland wrapped up for the first 24 minutes, but the Rams scored touchdowns on two fourth-quarter plays in the second half to make the difference.

 “I’m proud of this group so much because of what they’ve been through,” Rams coach T.J. Maynard said. “The last four years, they’ve had a lot of adversity on and off the field. For them to get this monkey off Raceland’s back, I’m so proud of them.”       

With the victory, Raceland advances to its first state semifinal game next Friday night at Williamsburg, a 21-7 winner over Hazard.

“If you had told me we would hold Pikeville to three points, I would have said you’re crazy,” Maynard said. “Chris McNamee does a great coaching job and they have so many weapons.”

But Raceland effectively took them away. Chase Hall, the Panthers’ 1,500-yard rusher with 27 TD runs, broke off a 62-yard carry on Pikeville’s first series but only had one gain of more than six yards the rest of the way.

Panthers quarterback Austin Charles couldn’t get much going outside of a 48-yard keeper to set up the field goal. Through the air, Charles completed 6 of 12 attempts for only 25 yards.

Raceland defensive back Josh Young shut down Pikeville receiver Cody Estep, who came in with 1,016 yards and 15 TDs.

“This is the first year I’ve ever played defense,” said Young, a 6-2 junior. “I’ve always played JV quarterback. At the beginning of the year (coach Maynard) told me to get on the field. There was a corner spot.”

Text Only
Local Sports
  • Kittens call on Ingram

    Somebody had to follow Dave Miller.
    Scott Ingram is pleased to be the coach to fill the vacancy for the man who built Ashland Blazer softball into a perennial state Top 25 program. The Kittens have won the 16th Region championship every year since 2009.

    July 29, 2014

  • 0729kypgaJr0034.jpg Golfers go out with an encore

    Evan Goble said he “wasn’t completely ready for a playoff” on Monday.
    That didn’t stop him from holing two pressure-packed playoff putts to win the 13-14-year-old division of the final event of the summer on the Kentucky PGA Junior Tour at Bellefonte Country Club.

    July 29, 2014 4 Photos

  • EKC Grid-O-Rama set for Aug. 15-16

    The annual Eastern Kentucky Conference football scrimmage contests are set for Aug. 15-16 at Fleming County and Raceland.

    July 29, 2014

  • Holliday embraces high expectations

    As Marshall football prepares to return to the gridiron to begin fall practice Aug. 4, this season the program finds itself labeled something that it has not been in many years: a favorite.

    July 29, 2014

  • Mobley, Jude key for EKU

    Eastern Kentucky coach Dean Hood has revamped the Colonels’ defense in hopes of containing OVC opponents’ spread offenses.

    July 29, 2014

  • ZACK KLEMME: Punchless Reds wasting solid pitching

    The last nine days have been an exercise in understanding just how slim the margin for error is for baseball teams — even good ones — that can’t score.

    July 27, 2014

  • 0726fbPrac0079.jpg Practice rolls on as kickoff approaches in less than 5 weeks

    As high school football teams strap on helmets and prepare for Friday nights next month, the theme of the first couple of weeks of practice for most is simple.
    You gotta work. Hard.
    And if you don’t, it’ll be exposed come Aug. 22.
    “Everybody looks good in helmets,” Ashland coach Tony Love said with a grin. “We’re all undefeated. There’s a lot of work to get done.
    “Our coaches and kids, we all know it, and that’s why they’re here and we’re here, and we’re gonna push hard every day.”

    July 25, 2014 4 Photos

  • kenzie-breaststroke.jpg Pennington makes push for Nationals

    Swimmer Kenzie Pennington had one last chance to make the cut for this year’s YMCA Long Course National Championships.
    The 15-year-old from Ashland didn’t disappoint.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Salyers shoots 75 for title at Lakeside

    Baylee Salyers of Flatwoods shot a 3-over par 75 at Lakeside Golf Course on Thursday to win the Girls Open division of the Walmart Kentucky PGA Junior Tour event.

    July 24, 2014

  • 0724putnamwebshot.JPG Laying the foundation Workers are finishing the foundation for the locker room on the home side of Putnam Stadium on Tuesday. The Ashland Tomcats open the football season on Aug. 22 against Newport Catholic.

    July 23, 2014