Bad gets worse for Central
By KENNETH COKER, Messenger Sports Reporter
Obion Central’s football fortunes continued to spiral downward Friday night.
The Rebels’ 55-0 Region 7-3A loss to Crockett County replaced Week 3’s 59-6 blowout defeat vs. Lone Oak as the school’s third-worst all-time loss and kept OC winless on the 2007 campaign.
Central is being outscored on average 46-7 this year and, in the 47-year history of the OCCHS football program, only two losses remained worse than Friday’s shellacking at the hands of the Cavaliers.
In their latest downfall, the Rebels put nothing on the scoreboard as their season-long offensive struggles continued.
The Rebels (0-6, 0-3) mustered just 106 yards against a Cavalier team (3-3, 1-2) that has been labeled a rebuilding project more times than it has been pegged a serious Region 7-3A playoff contender.
The low point of the game for the county locals’ was the second quarter when they were relegated to minus-17 rushing yards with a final tally of minus-12 yards offensively during the period.
For much of the game, the Rebels’ play — on both sides of the ball — seemed without spirit and that’s a problem that rookie OCCHS head coach Jason Driggers knows has to be fixed.
“We need some guys on the field who want to be out there,” Driggers said. “I don’t care if they’re freshmen, sophomores, juniors or seniors. We’re looking for players who want to go out there and make plays. Tonight, I didn’t see a whole lot of that.
“Our main problem is personnel. Until we get some competition going on within our team for starting positions, I don’t think there will be any improvement.”
Defensively, things weren’t much better either with the OC defense giving up 401 yards, the team’s second-highest allowance of the 2007 season.
“Again, it’s our personnel,” Driggers reiterated. “I can’t point that out enough. We work on tackling and fundamentals every day. I don’t know what else to do but to keep doing it until somebody wants to go out there and make some plays.”
Crockett County’s first drive yielded the only touchdown necessary in the final tote. Running back Al Lewis provided two highlights in the Cavs’ first drive, first breaking free for a 20-yard scamper during the march’s first play. Two plays later, Lewis hauled in a 26-yard aerial from Drew Speaker to move CC into the red zone.
From there, Terry Lyons took over with two carries late in the drive, including a one-yard dive to paydirt that put Crockett County up 7-0 after a Drew Warren PAT with 8:49 remaining in the first quarter.
For the Rebels, the team’s first offensive drive was the most promising of the evening.
Chase Clanton ran up the middle on the opening play for five yards with Hunter Calhoun catching an option pitch on second down for an eight-yard gain and a fresh set of downs.
After a pair of one-yard carries by Calhoun, Clanton rumbled nine yards for another OC first down.
Three plays later, though, the drive had fizzled with Clanton gaining just four yards on three plays as the Rebels were forced to punt.
The Cavaliers made quick work en route to the end zone for the second time.
On just the fifth play of the drive, Lewis bunkered behind tackle Cody Johnson with the big man providing ample cover for the first 10 yards of a run.
Lewis sprung from his spot behind his offensive lineman after the path was cleared and 51 yards later the whistle blew to signify another Crockett County score.
Warren’s kick went through the uprights as the Cavs took a 14-0 advantage into the second quarter.
In the second quarter, the Rebels gave up four touchdowns (three rushing). Lyons added his second and third scores of the night with a four-yard plunge and a one-yard leap to paydirt with Travis Mosier sprinting 40 yards for his lone score of the evening.
Meanwhile, Speaker connected with Matt Reynolds for the only touchdown pass of the night from 19 yards out.
At halftime, Crockett County held a commanding 42-0 lead.
With the clock running continuously due to the mercy rule, Darrius Bass and Jerry Prewitt each crossed the goal line once in the third with TD scampers of 16 and 18 yards, respectively, to cap the Cavaliers’ scoring.
The sparse OC offense was led by Patrick Haskins, who returned to the gridiron after three games on the sideline due to pneumonia and later because of injuries suffered in a motorcycle accident. Haskins finished the evening with 50 yards on nine carries.
Defensively, Mark Kissell, Lucas Fulbright and Cameron Jones paced the team atop the tackle chart with six stops each.
The Rebels return to action this Friday against Dyer County.
Sports reporter Kenneth Coker can be contacted by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.