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PREP FOOTBALL: Bowling Green drops North Hardin, 28-7 (9/13)

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By Chuck Jones

By CHUCK JONES cjones@thenewsenterprise.com RADCLIFF — Mistakes did the North Hardin Trojans in for the second consecutive week. Last week, Warren Central returned a fumble and punt for touchdowns in the first half on its way to a 34-19 victory over the Trojans. Bowling Green capitalized on more of the same as a fumble, interception and blocked punt all led to scores as the Purples — ranked third in the Associated Press Class 5-A poll — cruised to a 28-7 victory over North Hardin on Friday night at Ray Story Stadium. North Hardin’s offense struggled mightily for three quarters, gaining only 89 yards. The Trojans, ranked ninth in the AP Class 6-A poll, came to life in the fourth quarter, scoring their only touchdown on an Austin Berry 5-yard run and finished with 206 yards. North Hardin senior quarterback LaRod King completed 9-of-22 passes for 75 yards. He was intercepted once before sitting out the final 14 minutes due to a quadriceps injury. Bowling Green (2-1) put together an eight-play, 79-yard drive, with senior Tevin Barksdale capping it on a 2-yard run. The conversion pass failed but Bowling Green led 6-0 with 10:04 remaining in the second quarter. After the teams traded punts, Barksdale intercepted a King pass and returned it 38 yards to the North Hardin 37. A pass interference penalty against the Trojans and a 12-yard scramble by senior quarterback J.P. Jackson set up Barksdale’s 14-yard scoring run. Jackson connected with Zach Williams on the 2-point conversion to lift the Purples to a 14-0 lead with 3:25 left before halftime. The Trojans had another three-and-out, but North Hardin’s defense stopped the Purples and Max Oldham’s 59-yard field goal attempt came up short. North Hardin, though, fumbled on its first play from scrimmage and Bowling Green pounced on the loose ball. Jackson hit junior Lavance Anderson down the middle on a 21-yard scoring strike to give Bowling Green a 21-0 lead at halftime. On North Hardin’s first possession of the second half, the Trojans’ struggles continued as they went three-and-out. Bowling Green junior Jay Beard blocked Daniel Padilla’s punt and recovered it at the North Hardin 15. On the next play, Barksdale, who had 44 yards on seven carries, bulled his way into the end zone to stretch the Bowling Green lead to 28-0. The Trojans (1-2) cut the lead to 28-7 on Berry’s scoring run with 9:22 remaining in the fourth quarter. The drive, which was aided by two offsides penalties on Bowling Green that resulted in first downs, got a spark from Berry, who rushed for 29 yards on the drive, and sophomore quarterback Vincent Davis, who hit senior Greg Johnson for a 26-yard gain. UP NEXT: North Hardin plays host to Nelson County (2-1) next Friday at 8 p.m. Chuck Jones can be reached at 505-1759