Raiders snag a 26-13 win against Wayne County

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LOCAL SPORTS NEWS | Lynchburg — Coach Kris White said early in the season that his young Raiders would be a different team in games one through five than six through 10. The determine good guys in Columbia blue proved him right with a gritty 26-13 win over the Wayne County Wildcats in week six on Friday night.

Raiders jump out to an early 7-0 lead

Moore County elected to receive and made good use of their first series. The Wildcats low kick gave Moore County first and 10 at the 41 then Keller Morey called his own number for the first two Raider yards.On second down, Dawson White ran for eight more to give the Raiders a new set of downs. Two plays later, Morey completed a pass to Will Harder to get the Raiders into the red zone. With 8:39 to play in the first quarter, Logan Hegwood muscled forward for the Moore County touchdown. Blake Bradford’s PAT gave the Raiders the early 7-0 lead.

On their first series, the Wildcats managed two first downs before Wes Clifton and Joseph Trice tackled Wildcat Drew Bevis in the backfield for a six yard loss. On second and 16, Landon Jolley snuffed out the running play for more negative yardage. On third and 17, Wildcat QB Austin Whitson connected with Eli McClain but Dawson White stopped him short of the first down. On a gutsy first quarter call, the Wildcats went for it on fourth and five but Trice was having none of it and the Raiders took over on downs with 3:30 to go in the first quarter.

The Wildcats couldn’t get much going in their next series in large part to the lights out tackling by Hayden Carter and Wes Clifton. The first quarter ended with Moore County leading Wayne County 7-0.

Raiders take the lead before the half

In the second quarter, Moore County failed to make forward progress on their first series thanks in part to a couple of false start calls. Will Harder’s punt sailed deep on fourth and 16, but a Wildcat scooped it up and ran nearly the length of the field to give the Wildcats first and goal. Moore County then got two quality stops thanks to Peyton Martin but on third and goal Whitson muscled forward for the Wildcat touchdown. With 7:40 to play in the first half, the score was tied 7-7.

The Wildcats attempted an onsides kick but Moore County’s Will Baker recovered to give the Raiders first and 10 at the 37. On the next play, Dawson White’s make-a-man-miss run got called back for holding to make is first and 18. As Morey dropped to pass, a Wildcat lay in wait and snagged the INT.

The Raider passing game couldn’t deliver on the next series as QB Keller Morey’s passes went in and out of his receivers hands. He connected with Logan Hegwood on first and 10 but then threw two straight no gain passes and the Raiders punted.

Then a bit of head scratching officiating happened. Wayne County players ran out after the interception to celebrate and the refs threw a flag. The ref closest to the play called it too many men on the field and gave Moore County back possession of the ball. Then the head ref reversed that call and assessed the dead ball penalty for excessive celebration on the first down. Everyone in the stadium was confused including Raider announcer Jason Brown who said, “Honestly guys, I don’t know what’s going on.”

Wayne County failed to turn that INT into points. After three straight plays for no gain and a run play tackled for a loss by Joseph Trice, the Wildcats punted.

On the next Wildcat series, the Raiders Tyler Bowles, Isaiah Petty, and Dawson White got key stops to hand the Wildcats three straight no gain plays before Bowles stopped a fourth and three play to hand Moore County the ball back on downs.

Moore County regained the lead before halftime when Keller Morey connected with Dawson White on a screen pass. He juked then outran defenders 60 yards and into the end zone. The PAT fell no good but Moore County went into halftime leading the Wildcats 13-7.

13 second half Raider points seal the win

Neither team managed to make their way into the end zone in the third period. Then on the first play of the fourth quarter, on a fourth and goal play, Wildcat QB Whitson called his own number and ran down the right hash for six points to tie the game at 13-13.

Moore County answered. On first and 10, Keller Morey threw a screen pass to Dawson White, who made the catch then drug defenders forward for the first down. On the next play, Morey called his own number for a second first down and then kept his cool in the pocket to connect with Logan Hegwood for two yards on the next down. After an incomplete third and eight pass, Morey connect with Will Harder for a clutch first down play to set up Dawson White for the score. The PAT gave Moore County the 20-13 lead.

With a little over three minutes to play in the game, Keller Morey crossed field and plucked a Wildcat pass out of the air for a pick six to seal the 26-13 win.

Raiders get a bye week during fall break

Following the game, Raider Head Coach Kris White told he team that he was impressed by their resilience.

“This one was hard but I’m proud of the way you fought back when things went against us,” he said. “We didn’t hang our heads. We continued to press.”

Keller Morey got the start at quartback and went seven of 17 for 152 yards.

Dawson White led for the Raiders with two touchdowns. Keller Morey and Logan Hegwood added one each. Blake Bradford and Peyton Martin each went one for two in point after attempts.

Keller Morey was the top rusher for Moore County calling his own number for 82 yards followed by Dawson White with 70 and Logan Hegwood with 18. In receiving yards, White led with 124 followed by Will Harder with 26.

On defense, Dawson White and Peyton Martin led with 11 tackles each. Wes Clifton and Hayden Carter followed them closely with seven tackles each. Clifton and Eli Brown each got a sack and Keller Morey got an interception for a score. Clifton got a fumble recovery. Clifton and Brown both sacks on the Wildcat QB.

The win improves the Raiders record to 2-4 overall and 1-2 in Region 5 play. It also raises the Raiders region standing to fourth behind regionally undefeated Cornersville and Fayetteville City. Eagleville is currently ranked third in Region 5A. Moore County schools are on Fall Break this week and the Raiders will get a bye week to prepare for Loretto on October 8.•

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Lynchburg. 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.}