If patterns of the past serve as signs for the future, Friday supplied quite a promising precursor for Paintsville.
The Tigers in blue stunned the state with a 19-14 triumph over the Beechwood Tigers.
The only other times Paintsville has trumped Beechwood happened in 1978 and ’85. Both were state semifinal matchups, therefore both seasons resulted in a state finals appearance for Paintsville.
Should Paintsville fans make plans for a drive to Lexington in early December? Perhaps it’s a tad early for that, but what’s the harm in talking about the prospect?
While a win over Beechwood, a Class A powerhouse now stationed in 2A, feels like a late postseason victory, undoubtedly it’s simply a Week 2 “W” in coach Joe Chirico’s eyes.
It doesn’t get easier. Some may argue the Tigers’ next game pits them against an even better opponent.
Paintsville will put its unbeaten mark on the line at home against Pikeville.
How long can the Tigers keep the zero in the loss column? The same question applies to Russell, which is also coming off a thoroughly convincing, massively impressive win over Raceland.
Like Paintsville, Russell has its fair share of tough tests in front of it. The Red Devils will try to move to 3-0 for the first time since 2008 on Friday at Ironton.
Which win is more meaningful? For Paintsville, beating Beechwood must be viewed as one of the most monumental regular-season wins in program history. For Russell, toppling Raceland is notable, but more remarkable was the 41-point margin.
Three and out
•Normally, one might just chalk up Colten Pinson’s touchdown catch from Jake Gregg on Friday as a cool moment. It was the senior’s first varsity TD.
Well, it was much bigger than that for the Pinson family. Paul Pinson, Colten’s grandfather, died on Wednesday.
Paul Pinson served as Boyd County National Little League’s president in the 1980s. He was also a baseball umpire and football official for 21 years. According to his obituary, he was a faithful Tomcats/Kittens fan and was a proud Kentucky Colonel.
Colten Pinson’s touchdown reception was his second varsity grab.
•Several area stadiums have played host to gigantic crowds so far. Fans purchased about 7,000 pre-sale tickets for this past Friday’s highly anticipated season opener between Wheelersburg and Ironton at Tanks Memorial Stadium. While the storm and relentless rain wiped out some of the Wheelersburg side, most fans stuck around to witness the Fighting Tigers’ 30-6 defeat of the Pirates. As for the covered Ironton side, the Tiger faithful didn’t go anywhere.
Ironton coach Trevon Pendleton is sensing a special season because of unique unity.
“A lot of these guys have been forged in the same fire,” Pendleton said. “They have a tight bond. They love to do everything together. There’s a lot of team chemistry.”
•Raceland will be without junior quarterback Jake Heighton for an extended period of time. He suffered a broken collarbone, according to his mother’s Twitter post, during the Rams’ loss to Russell on Saturday. According to emedicinehealth.com, typical recovery time is four to eight weeks for the injury. However, it is unknown how long Heighton will be sidelined. It is also undetermined whether surgery will be required to repair the break.
Added to that obvious big blow is the fact that they travel to a Rowan County team that’s ostensibly turned the corner. The Vikings are 2-0 for the first time since 2011.
“It’s a real challenge for us, but one that will really reveal our character,” said Rams coach Michael Salmons on Saturday of the matchup with the 4A school. “When you kinda get kicked in the mouth, it reveals your character, whether you’re gonna roll over like a dog and die or whether you’re gonna stand up and start throwing haymakers, and I expect us to start throwing haymakers next Friday night.”
•Four: Johnny Maher (Fleming Co.), Baden Gillispie (Lawrence Co.), Karsten Poe (Paintsville).
Maher was 23 of 35 for 358 passing yards with two touchdowns through the air and another one running. However, the Panthers fell to Greenup County, 40-36.
Gillispie scored every time he kept it after a snap. The quarterback totes four times for 227 yards and four TDs — he prompted a running clock at the 11:20 mark of the second quarter.
Poe hauled in 164 receiving yards and two TDs for Paintsville.
•Three: Reid Carrico (Ironton), Nathan Conley (Russell), Logan Pinkley (Fleming Co.), Eli Sammons (Greenup Co.), Nathan Helton (East Carter), Blake Hester (Ashland), Jake Hyden (Paintsville).
•Two: Keontae Pittman (Ashland), Malakai Anderson (Russell), Kaleb Flanery (Fleming Co.), Auston Clarkson (Greenup Co.), Jake Gregg (Ashland), Ryan Leach (Bath Co.), John Walker Phelps (Paintsville).
•One: Ian Bell (Russell), Jake Heighton (Raceland), Dalton Nelson (Bath Co.), Joe Lusby (Boyd County), Gunnur Lewis (Raceland), J.T. Garrett (Ashland), Austin Evans (Greenup Co.), Gage Salyers (Ironton), Jacob Underwood (East Carter), Braden Hicks (East Carter), Colton Pinson (Ashland).
•Didn’t report statistics: Lawrence County (partial), Morgan County, Johnson Central, Rowan County.
*Editor’s note: The MMQB accidentally left Raceland out of last week’s “helmet stickers” portion of this column after the Rams beat Greenup County, 17-14. For those scoring at home, give the following to these Rams: Jake Heighton (three), Ethan Cox (three), Gunnur Lewis (two) and Braydon Shore (one).
Snyder NEKY Super Seven
1. Johnson Central (2-0)
2. Ashland (2-0)
3. Paintsville (2-0)
4. Russell (2-0)
5. Rowan Co. (2-0)
6. Raceland (1-1)
7. Greenup Co. (1-1)
Next two in: East Carter, Fleming Co.
Miss it? Here’s a recap of local scores from this past weekend: Russell 41, Raceland 0; Ironton 30, Wheelersburg 6; Greenup County 40, Fleming County 36; East Carter 49, Lewis County 0; Ashland 53, Boyd County 7; Rowan County 40, Bath County 7; Betsy Layne 46, Morgan County 30; Lawrence County 42, Prestonsburg 12; Johnson Central 28, Capital (West Virginia) 13; and Paintsville 19, Beechwood 14.
Who from Greenup County caught what was ultimately the winning touchdown and made the game’s final stop in a win over Fleming County on Friday? The first to answer correctly via email, tweet, phone call or Facebook message will predict winners of games with us this week!
Halftime Prep Talk
For the first time in the Kelly Ford era, the HTPT crew stopped by Rowan County’s football field last week. Check out the show at dailyindependent.com or by visiting the “Halftime Prep Talk” Facebook page. Who will be featured this week? Watch and find out.
Reach AARON SNYDER at firstname.lastname@example.org or (606) 326-2664. Follow @DIndependentQB on Twitter.