Raiders sting Hornets in rivalry game

Dawson White catches a pass from Connor Partin in stride last Friday in Huntland. White scored three touchowns in the 34-10 Region 5A win. (PHOTO CREDIT: Jeff Reed Photography)

LOCAL SPORTS| Huntland — It took four different quarterbacks and a bit of resilience in hostile territory but the Moore County Raiders walked away with bragging rights for the next 364 with a 34-10 win over the Huntland Hornet in Franklin County on Friday night. It’s an annual rivalry game that dates back to 1940s and it usually gets a little chippy. Friday night’s contest was no exception.

Raiders threw three first half interceptions

Neither team scored in the first quarter. Huntland went three and out on both their possessions. The Raiders offense moved the ball but ended both their first and third series with interceptions. The second quarter started with much of the same. On second and nine, the Raiders threw their third INT of the night at the 8:56 mark.

Huntland turned that mistake into points. They drove to fourth and one in the red zone and looked to go for it but a delay of game call and a vocal home crowd changed the Huntland coach’s minds. Instead, the Hornet kicker sailed a kick 30 yards through the upright to give the Hornets a 3-0 lead with 4:52 to play in the first half.

On the next play, the Raider coaching staff sent in their third QB of the night, Dawson White. He called his own number on first and goal to get Moore County on the board. Blake Bradford’s PAT gave the Raiders the 7-3 lead.

The first half ended with Huntland driving and they got the ball first in the second half.

Raiders manage 21 unanswered second half points

The Raiders and Hornets traded possession on the first three drives on the third quarter, then Moore County got the offense going with a long strike from Connor Partin to Keller Morey for the first down. One play later, Partin connected again, this time with Will Harder, who ran into the end zone for his first receiving TD of the year. Bradford’s PAT gave the Raiders a 14-3 edge.

The Hornets punted on the their next series after Aydan Blair managed a tackle in the backfield for negative yardage followed by a momentum stopping play by Wes Clifton. Moore County took over with 2:45 to play in the third.

On their next offensive series, a slant pass to Will Baker as well as a handoff and deep ball to Keller Morey set up the Raiders first and 10 at the 32. Connor Partin then connected with Morey on third and 10 for the Moore County score. Bradford’s PAT gave the Raiders a 21-3 lead over Huntland.

Huntland took over with about a minute left to play in the third quarter but Joseph Trice sacked the Huntland QB Evan Keller for a big loss. Huntland then fumbled on the next down and Raider Isaiah Ralston recovered to give Moore County back the ball in the Huntland red zone to start the fourth quarter. Two plays later, Connor Partin handed off to Dawson White for the score with 11:39 to play in the game. Blake Bradford’s PAT made the score Moore County 28, Huntland 3.

Raider defender Joseph Trice sacks Huntland QB Evan Keller in the third quarter. (PHOTO CREDIT: Jeff Reed Photography)

On the next series, Huntland’s Trenton Morris came in to play quarterback. From the shotgun on second and five, he called his own number and ran into the end zone for the Hornets first touchdown of the night. With 10:35 remaining, the new score was Raiders 28, Hornets 10.

Moore County immediately answered. Dawson White broke tackles and fought his way to the 20 on the first down. The 45 yard run put Moore County in excellent field position. Conner Partin then called his own number twice to earn the first down. On second and goal, White walked into the end zone for the Raiders final score of the night.

At the end of four quarter the Raiders (4-6, 3-3) walked away with Region 5A rivalry victory and a chance to advance to the regional playoffs.

Dawson White led on offense and Peyton Martin led on defense

Dawson White led for the Raiders with 18 points and 176 all purpose yards. Keller Morey and Will Harder added a touchdown each and Blake Bradford was four of six on point after attempts. Connor Partin took the majority of the quarterback snaps throwing 11 of 18 for 95 yards. White was the leading rusher with 95 yards on the ground. Keller Morey led in receiving yards with four catches for 91 yards.

Freshman Peyton Martin led on defense with 14 tackles including 11 solo tackles. Joseph Trice and Aydan Blair each managed a sack. Isaiah Petty snagged an interception and Isaiah Ralston recovered a fumble.

Moore County will travel four hours this Friday to McKenzie to play the undefeated Rebels. They currently rank number one in Region 6A play and are one of three undefeated teams playing in TSSAA Class 1A along with Middle College and Clay County.

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Lynchburg, Tennessee. We cover Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}