Week nine is officially in the books for the Cougars of Letcher Central as they hosted Bourbon County this past Friday night. It was another one of those games where the Cougars could try a lot of new things on both sides of the ball because they were so much stronger than Bourbon County.
The Colonels are from Paris and they had a pretty long trip to Ermine. They have struggled this season and came in with a 2-6 record while the Cougars stand at 6-2.
It was senior night and homecoming for the Cougars so it was a big night all the way around. The Cougars would say goodbye to eight seniors and it is always an emotional time for the players and their families as well as the fans.
After the festivities were over it was time for some football and the Cougars came out on a mission to control every phase of the game — and they succeeded in every way.
Bourbon County kicked off to the Cougars and they tried a squib kick. The Cougars downed it at the 40-yard line and went on offense. On the first play Charlie Banks scrambled 29 yards to the Bourbon 31.
After no gain by Caleb Frazier on first down, Bourbon County was called for a facemask. This put the ball on the Colonel 14- yard line. Banks called his own number and took it up the middle for 14 yards and a 7-0 lead with 10:27 left in the first quarter. He also kicked the point after.
It was a quick punt for the Colonels as they were unable to move the ball and the Cougars were back in business again. A pass from Banks to Craig Collier set up a first down at the 49-yard line. Travis Stephens took it down to the Colonel 37 following a pickup of 6 by Chase Adams. Banks found McKenzie Smith over the middle for another first down at the 26-yard line. Dustin Brown took it all the way on the next play and it was quickly 13-0.
The Colonels would answer this time as they put together a drive that resulted in a 34-yard run by Barnes to make the score 13-7. This woke up the Cougars pretty quickly or defensive coordinator Delano Thomas woke up the defense because they put the clamps down from that point on.
The Cougars returned the Colonel kick inside the 49-yard line. Banks took the ball and juked his way to an apparent touchdown but the referees said he was stopped before he crossed the goal line so it was first down inside the five-yard line. Greg Collins would get the honors as he took it home for a 21-7 Cougar lead with 24 seconds left in the first quarter.
Another punt by the Colonels and the Cougars set off on another drive. Banks hooked up with Nathan Maggard for a 15- yard scoring strike and a 28-7 Cougar lead with 6:10 in the second quarter.
The Colonels tried to mount a drive as they got close to midfield, but the Cougars stuffed two straight running plays and forced a fumble and took over on offense at their own 48. The Cougars moved to the 10-yard line after Banks connected with McKenzie Smith, and then Banks found Kevin Wurschmidt in the end zone for another Cougar touchdown and a 35-7 lead after Gose hit the point after with 1:06 left in the first half.
The Cougars were not done. On a third-and-eight the Bourbon County quarterback fumbled inside the Cougar five-yard line and big Josh McBee picked it up for the Cougars and scored and gave him a memory of which every lineman dreams. With the score it was 42-7 at the break.
The Cougars tacked on another score early in the third as Banks connected again on a passing touchdown. This time the receiver was Travis Stephens from 28 yards out and it was 49-7. This resulted in the mercy rule going into effect so the clock ran continuously. The Cougars tacked on one final touchdown as Sydney Fields went in from two yards out to make it 55-7, but the Colonels ended the game with a touchdown as the clock ran out to make the final 55-13.
The Cougars moved to 7-2 while the Colonels fell to 2-7. It was a big offensive night for the Cougars and a good defensive night as well. But the main thing was letting the younger kids get some much needed experience.
Now the Cougars will have one game left before the playoffs and that will be on the road against Lawrence County. Lawrence County is 0-9 but I know they are the best 0-9 team in the state. Just ask Belfry who barely escaped 20-14 when they traveled down there.
The Cougars need to stay focused and take care of business and then worry about the playoffs. They will be a number two seed and they will host the first round of the playoffs. So it is going to be an exciting next few weeks for Cougar fans.
Now I’ll give you some stats after eight games for the Cougars. This does not include the Bourbon County game. In passing Charlie Banks has hit on 81 of 130 passes for 1,253 yards and 14 touchdowns with only four interceptions. He had three more touchdown passes against Bourbon County. Freshman Logan Johnson has completed 11 of 14 passes for 239 yards and three touchdowns. He has not thrown an interception.
Leading the way in receiving for the Cougars is Dustin Brown with 19 receptions for 433 yards and four touchdowns. McKenzie Smith has 16 receptions for 241 yards and two touchdowns. Travis Stephens has 15 receptions for 157 yards and three touchdowns.
On the ground the Cougars are led by Charlie Banks with 483 yards on 71 attempts with 14 touchdowns. Greg Collins has 382 yards on 50 attempts with two touchdowns. Travis Stephens has 279 yards on 30 attempts with three touchdowns. Freshman Logan Johnson has 150 yards on 12 attempts with two touchdowns. The longest run for a touchdown came from Travis Stephens for 55 yards and the longest receiving touchdown was by Michael Frazier for 68 yards.
The Cougars on the ground have dominated their opponents 1,702 yards to 736 and in passing 1,492 to 1,051. On defense the Cougars are led by freshman Logan Johnson with 32 tackles and 14 assists. Following him is the hit man McKenzie Smith. Smith has 28 tackles and three sacks. He has seven tackles for a loss of 77 yards. He loves to hit and he always hits hard. Dustin Brown is close behind with 25 tackles and 11 assists with three tackles for loss. Caleb Frazier rounds out the leaders on defense with 24 tackles and 10 tackles for loss.