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Cougars on road this week to battle strong Union team

Letcher County Central’s already strong football schedule doesn’t get any easier this Friday night when the Cougars travel to Big Stone Gap, Va., to take on the Union High School Bears.

Letcher Central, which fell to 0-3 on the season after losing to undefeated Hazard, 43-14, in a rain-delayed game at Ermine, now must travel to face the 2-0 Bears, who are coming off a 42- 28 win at Richlands, Va. Despite losing star running back James Mitchell to graduation, Union appears to have come back as strong as it ever has been since the school was formed through the merger of Appalachia and Powell Valley High Schools in 2011.

Union has a strong running game again this year, led by senior speedster Avery Jenkins, a 5-foot-11 senior who rushed for 127 yards and three touchdowns against Richlands. Running back Mason Polier, who stands 6-2 and weighs 215 pounds, rushed for 125 yards at Richland.

Letcher Central quarterback Nick Sergent scored both of the Cougars’ touchdowns, each on runs. Sergent, who also rushed for a two-point conversion, passed for 99 yards, hitting on 10 of 18 attempts while throwing two interceptions.

LCC’s Jonathan Sergent led his team’s running attack with 36 yards on eight attempts. Hunter Campbell rushed for 28 yards on seven attempts, and Zachary Hall had 22 yards on seven attempts. Zach Hensley gained one yard on a single attempt.

Hunter Campbell led the LCC receiving corps with 40 yards on two catches. Zach Bentley caught three passes for 25 yards, and Kalin Branham hauled in two passes for 20 yards. Wil Parks gained eight yards with one reception, while Hunter Brashear gained six yards on two catches.

Defensively, the Cougars were led by Jonathan Sergent’s nine total tackles. Hunter Brashear, Hunter Campbell and Zach Hensley each had five total tackles, while Kaden Barnett, Sam Mullins, and Leyton Polly each recorded three total tackles. Two total tackles were credited to Jepatha Griffith and Wil Parks. Credited with one total tackle each were Jordan Adams, Jayson Buttrey, Tyler Fields, Joseph Fisher, David Hager, Wyatt Ison, Eli Matthews, and Nick Sergent.

Wyatt Ison hauled in an intercept for the Cougars and returned it 15 yards. Hunter Campbell had a fumble recovery.

Hazard scored three touchdowns on the ground and three through the air. The Bulldogs’ Skyler Pelfrey scored all three of the rushing TD’s while gaining 110-yards on the night. Quarterback Bailey Blair teamed with Mason Collins, Isaiah Stupart, and Kyle Johnson for the three passing TD’s.

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