Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local Sports

October 22, 2012

MONDAY MORNING QUARTERBACK: Central, Ashland put on a show

ASHLAND — Football fans, would you rather see your team get blown out or lose in mind-blowingly crushing fashion, such as Ashland did on Friday night in a 22-21 loss at Johnson Central?

Players, the QB will ask you the same thing.

Coaches?

I call Friday night’s game the “Thrilla in Paintsvilla” because, as Johnson Central coach Jim Matney inferred, the rivalry matchup was akin to a heavyweight boxing match.

“It seemed like every time we punched, Ashland would counter-punch,” he said.

Several players got in a jab.

Malik Massey, bouncing around like Frogger from the classic arcade game, sprung free for a few runs that made it look like he’d been the feature running back all season long for the Tomcats. But the senior was just in his second game, filling in for the injured Quinton Baker. He’s typically a wideout.

Aaron Elam, Ashland’s quarterback, broke away for a thunderous 50-yard run.

There was Zach Gound-to-Dalton Adkins Part I, which capped off an epic 15-play, eight-minute drive for Johnson Central — but the sequel was even better.

Josh Dillon’s TD sprint tied it all up in the fourth quarter.

Ashland’s Luke Johnson and company forced (and recovered) a Johnson Central fumble with four minutes left.

So many players formed to make a collage of images that remain vivid.

However, most of the many images will eventually become distorted and fade away.

Those that will last: 

‰Fourth-and-19 showing on the scoreboard before Gound-to-Adkins Part II — an overtime touchdown that put Johnson Central within two points of an improbable win, considering the situation.

‰The blur, which was pretty accurately what I saw from the press box when Jordan Young took a handoff and found the goal line to give the Golden Eagles a victory.

‰Both crowds’ visibly contrasting reactions to the final two plays of the game, one deflation, the other jubilation.

‰Ashland coach Leon Hart sitting on the Tomcats’ bench, dumbstricken and heartbroken.

‰The spherical wave of gold and black converged in a celebratory cluster at midfield.

As for the question posed earlier, I think the answer depends on when the question is asked.

Over time, it might become tougher and tougher to swallow, especially for the losing coaches and players. Time could also have the opposite effect.

For fans, though, all of those images, all of those players and all of those moments, they just collided to produce one of the best games you will have ever laid eyes on.

Text Only
Local Sports
  • 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

  • Genuine throwback

    Todd Eastham is disproving the old cliche, “Those who can, do; those who can’t, teach.”

    July 23, 2014

  • MARK MAYNARD: Looking for those who inspire

    Inspirtation, they say, comes from within. It is defined as an inspiring or animating action or influence.

    July 22, 2014

  • 0722KYPGA_152.jpg Jones tops Gillum in playoff at Eagle Trace

    Ashland senior golfer Logan Jones didn't shoot his average Monday.
    He didn't mind.
    His three-over par 75 and one-hole playoff win over Elliott County junior Ryan Gillum gave him the Boys Open division title in the Kentucky PGA Junior Tour stop at Morehead State University's Eagle Trace Golf Course.

    July 21, 2014 6 Photos

  • 102213_329a.jpg Raceland tabs Clark as new girls basketball coach

    Jason Clark has a reputation of being — to use his word — “passionate” on the Raceland volleyball sideline.
    He plans to bring that same approach as the Lady Rams’ new basketball coach.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0305region2_389.jpg Pass the Mayo: East sophomore PG, Lady Raiders preparing for winter run

    East Carter sophomore point guard Kristen Mayo has played basketball for as long as she can remember.

    July 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0718spinda.jpg Steelers super fan Spinda to be recognized in Florida

    Shawn Spinda doesn’t have to use speech to profess his passion for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
    All it takes is a quick glance for a person to get the picture.
    But to absorb the whole picture, you’ll need to clear your schedule.
    Spinda is one of several fanatics who will be recognized at the Sports Fans Conference in Orlando, Florida, which is set for Aug. 28-Sept. 1 at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort. He is a “What a Fan” NFL Fan of the Year nominee.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0703rfLL0204.jpg Little League State Baseball: Ready to run

    Morehead 11- and 12-year-old All-Star baseball manager Toby Gardner collectively likened his team to a racehorse.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0717prokick1.jpg Prokicker.com camp Eleven Ashland Tomcat football players were part of the Ray Guy Prokicker.com camp at Huntington High. The high-profile camps are put on all over the country. Rick Sang, an Ashland native who befriended Guy 20 years ago, is the camp's founder.

    July 16, 2014