RUSSELL Russell wanted to pick up where it left off a week ago after a thrilling overtime victory against Class 6A Simon Kenton.
A slow start quickly turned into a fast-paced offensive attack in the third quarter as the Red Devils dispatched Greenup County, 39-0, on Friday night at Henry R. Evans Stadium.
“You have to give a lot of credit to Greenup County in the first half,” Russell coach T.J. Maynard said. “We told our kids all week that you can’t look at scores or common opponents. It’s a rivalry game. It’s a district game. Those guys have a lot of pride. Coach (Zack) Moore and coach (Travis) Jones do a great job. They made plays in the first half.”
“We only had three possessions (in the first half),” he added. “We scored on all three, but it wasn’t easy. We talked to them at halftime. If you want to be a championship football team, you need to come out in the second half and dominate the football game.”
Both teams moved the ball comfortably in the first 24 minutes. The Musketeers executed two long drives but came up empty on both occasions. Greenup County marched down the field during a 13-play drive in the second quarter only to turn it over on downs in the red zone. The drive was stymied by quarterback sacks from Max Coburn and Bradley Rose.
“Every issue that we may have is compounded when you are playing a really good opponent,” Moore said. “Russell is a very good team. When you come in as the underdog, you have to make the plays early. You have to put up points early. We had a couple of opportunities there to get our hands on some footballs defensively. Then we had two drives there with no points.”
Russell, however, made the most of its possessions in the first two frames. Senior Nathan Conley injured his ankle on the Red Devils’ opening drive and didn’t return as a precaution. Ethan Oborne stepped up in his absence and scored the game’s first touchdown on a 12-yard scamper midway through the opening stanza. The sophomore accumulated 111 yards of offense and scored twice.
“It kind of threw our rotation out whack a little bit,” Maynard said of Conley’s sideline time. “It was an opportunity to get Ethan more touches and Connor Goodall more reps on the defensive side. Hopefully, it pays dividends for you down the road.”
“He played huge,” Charlie Jachimczuk said of Oborne. “He is so young but he came in and stepped up with Nathan out. It really helped.”
Jachimczuk recorded another efficient outing, hitting 16 of his 19 pass attempts, connecting with seven different receivers. He ran for a touchdown near halftime and threw two TD passes.
The senior quarterback was awarded Backyard Brawl Most Valuable Player honors.
“I thought we really came out slow in the first (half),” Jachimczuk said. “We really picked it up in the second half. We came out and played hard.”
“It definitely motivates us,” he continued. “We beat a ranked Class 6A team at the time. We have really prepared for this moment and that will give us a good mindset heading into next week (against Ashland).”
Chase Snedegar contributed a 3-yard touchdown run to give Russell a 19-0 halftime advantage.
A Goodall sack forced a Greenup County punt to begin the second half. Four plays later, Oborne got loose and raced 30 yards to paydirt.
Jachimczuk went to the air to complete the Red Devils’ scoring. He hooked up with Hunter Martin for a 36-yard scoring strike.
He fired a short TD pass to Jacob Goheen on the next Russell (5-0) possession to start a running clock.
“That’s where we are a little different than in years past,” Maynard said. “It used to be one or two guys. Now, we have a lot of different guys that can catch the ball and we have three or four running backs that can give you something on Friday nights. It was great to see Andre Robinson-Crews get in there and get his feet wet.”
Auston Clarkson caught three balls for 42 yards. He took home MVP honors for Greenup County (2-2). Brayden Craycraft also corralled three passes for 38 yards. Moore said first-year quarterback Carson Wireman keeps progressing and wants to get better.
“The last two weeks, he has made some 10th-grade, first-year-starter mistakes,” Moore said. “It’s his opportunity to learn from this. He was already talking about it on the sideline. That is what I admire about Carson. He has a willingness to learn. He will make a lot of big plays for us moving forward.”
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GREENUP CO. 0 0 0 0 — 0
RUSSELL 7 12 20 0 — 39
R—Ethan Oborne 12 run (Nathan Totten kick) 6:39
R—Chase Snedegar 3 run (run failed) 9:43
R—Charlie Jachimczuk 4 run (pass failed) :55
R—E. Oborne 30 run (Blake Hern kick) 8:26
R—Hunter Martin 36 pass from Jachimczuk (Nathan Totten) 5:00
R—Jacob Goheen 4 pass from Jachimczuk (kick failed) 1:02
First Downs 7 19
Rushes-Yards 28-64 26-143
Comp-Att-Int 7-14-1 17-21-0
Passing Yards 80 211
Penalties-Yards 7-64 7-50
Fumbles-Lost 0-0 1-0
Return Yards 0 40
Punts-Avg. 4-28.8 1-31
Greenup County rushing: Farrow 6-16, Henderson 13-40, Wireman 5-(-10), Clarkson 1-(-2), H. Clevenger 1-1, Noble 2-19.
Russell rushing: Conley 1-2, Snedegar 8-22, Jachimczuk 4-39, E. Oborne 7-80, Richardson-Crews 4-7, Parsons 2-(-7).
Greenup County passing: Wireman 7 of 14 for 80 yards.
Russell passing: Jachimczuk 16-19 for 207 yards, Rose 1 of 2 for 4 yards.
Greenup County receiving: Clarkson 3-42, Craycraft 3-38, B. Clevenger 1-0.
Russell receiving: Patrick 3-45, D. Oborne 1-18, Conley 1-26, E. Oborne 3-31, Lykins 1-9, Martin 5-64, Goheen 3-18.