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PREP FOOTBALL: Central Hardin stuns Greenwood, 14-7 (10/25)

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Gators had less than 100 yards of offense entering fourth quarter

By Nathaniel Bryan

 

By NATHANIEL BRYAN nbryan@thenewsenterprise.com CECILIA — Tristan Long helped the homestanding Central Hardin Bruins snap a long district losing streak Friday night. A sophomore running back-defensive back, Long caught a touchdown pass and had an end-zone interception as the defensive-minded Bruins stunned regular-season Class 6-A, District 2 champion Bowling Green Greenwood, 14-7. The Gators, who barely topped Central Hardin, 7-3 last year in Bowling Green, had 234 yards on 61 plays, but all but 79 of those yards came in the final quarter. The Gators had just 51 yards on 26 plays in the first half compared to 91 more yards on one less play for the Bruins. The Gators were held scoreless in the third period despite having three drives start in Bruin territory. Long, who had 22 rushing yards on five carries and 23 receiving yards on two receptions, capped off a 10-play, 80-yard drive for the Bruins (3-5 overall, 1-3 district) when he took his screen pass from senior quarterback Lincoln Pyles, moved along the right sideline and dove into the front right corner of the end zone with 7:09 remaining in the third quarter. The Gators (6-3, 3-1) looked to tie the score three possessions later, but Long fell backward while intercepting a pass from Greenwood senior quarterback Logan Pemberton in the left side of the end zone. The turnover, the Gators’ second of three, proved costly as Pyles and the Bruins marched 80 yards in six plays and took 2:42 off the clock for what proved to be the game-winning touchdown on Pyles’ 34-yard scoring strike to junior receiver Rex Kelly. The Gators responded two possessions later after a blocked Bruin field goal bounced back to their own 4-yard line. Greenwood’s 11-play, 96-yard scoring drive ended with a 1-yard keeper run by Pemberton. Central Hardin’s ensuing possession ended with a punt, but Greenwood’s comeback bid ended when junior linebacker Tyler Williamson intercepted Pemberton near the Bruins’ sideline and Pyles took a pair of knees as the Bruins snapped an eight-game district losing streak dating back to 2006. Pyles was 11-of-20 passing for 190 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. He also caught two passes for 28 yards and carried the ball 16 times for 44 yards. Central Hardin junior fullback Jeremy Barr had 19 yards on 12 carries, but a game-high 100 yards on four receptions. He caught a 54-yard screen pass from Pyles to set up Kelly’s touchdown. The Bruins amassed 390 yards on 73 plays for their most yards in a victory this season. Central Hardin returns to action next week at Ohio County (1-7), which lost its seventh consecutive game Friday against visiting Hopkinsville, 54-21. Nathaniel Bryan can be reached at 505-1758