Letcher County Central defeated Floyd Central by a score of 43-22 to finish the season with a record of 5-5 and momentum going into the playoffs after winning five of the last six games.
The opening kickoff went out of bounds to give LCC good field position. On the first play Hunter Campbell took a pitch for a 12-yard gain near mid field. Running back Jon Sergent had runs of 6, 9, and 12 yards to get deep into Floyd Central territory, but the drive stalled and a 33-yard field goal attempt was barely missed to keep the game scoreless.
Safety Leyton Polly broke up a pass on third down for the Cougar defense to force a punt. The snap went over the Floyd Central punter’s head and was recovered by Zach Hensley for a touchdown. Zach Dollarhyde made the extra point to give LCC an early 7-0 lead.
Floyd Central gained 2 first downs before on 4th and 4 and it went for it. Safety Nick Sergent stopped the ball carrier just short of the line to gain for a turnover on downs.
On 3rd and 2, Jon Sergent gained 8 yards on a dive play up the middle for a LCC first down. On the first play of the second quarter, Nick Sergent used a play action fake to complete a 31-yard touchdown pass to Kalin Branham. The extra point increased the Cougar lead to 14-0.
The LCC defense forced a second consecutive 3 and out. The Jaguar punt was downed at the LCC 18-yard line.
After a 12-yard run on a quarterback keeper by Nick Sergent, Campbell took a handoff and split between two defenders in the secondary for a 70-yard touchdown run to make the score 21-0 after Dollarhyde’s extra point sailed through the uprights.
On the next possession, LCC linebacker Jayson Buttrey recovered a fumble in Floyd Central territory. Nick Sergent quickly capitalized on the turnover by scrambling for a 17-yard touchdown, making the score 28-0 midway through the second quarter.
The LCC defense, led by a sack by linebacker Hayden King, forced yet another Jaguar punt.
Campbell juked around a defender for a 34-yard touchdown run and the 2-point conversion was good to start a running clock for the remainder of the game just before halftime.
On the last play of the first half, defensive lineman Cody Austin sacked the quarterback and forced a fumble that was recovered by Owen Gibson for LCC to keep the score at 36-0.
The second half went by quickly due to the running clock. LCC got important playing time for a lot of its junior varsity players. The highlight of the second half was a Hunter Campbell 62-yard kickoff return after a Floyd Central score.
The final score of 43-22 was not indicative of how much LCC dominated the game in the first half before all the starters were pulled. The win improved the Cougars to 5-5 on the season.
Hunter Campbell ran the ball 10 times for 152 yards and 2 touchdowns. Campbell also had a kickoff return touchdown. Nick Sergent ran the ball 3 times for 35 yards and a touchdown. Sergent also had a passing touchdown to Kalin Branham. Jon Sergent ran the ball 7 times for 48 yards.
The LCC defense played its best game of the season. The Cougars had sacks by Hayden King and Cody Austin. Nick Sergent, Jepatha Griffith and Jayson Buttrey led the team with 4 tackles apiece, but the entire unit played with high energy and held Floyd Central scoreless in the first half.
LCC will hope to carry the momentum into this week’s first round of the playoffs when it hosts Lincoln County. Letcher Central earned the first round home game by posting a 3-1 district record to earn the 2nd seed out of district 8 in KHSAA class 5. Kickoff will be at 7:30 p.m. at Cougar Field.