Wildcats fall to Owls
Wildcats bow out in region tournament
Outlaws lose playoff game to Clay County
Wildcats fall to
Leah Thomas/OCN Sports
Livingston Academy senior Jamey Vaughn outraces a Smith County
defender in Friday's Senior Night game. Despite a second-half surge,
the Wildcats fell to the Owls.
By MAC McLEOD, OCN Sports
"That was a great football game," Smith County Head Coach
Jimmy Maynard told his team moments after Friday night's 26-21 defeat
of Livingston Academy.
"You beat a great team with some great athletes and I'm proud
of you. This is my ol' stomping grounds and it was a good feeling
to come here and win."
For the Wildcats, it was another crushing defeat at the hands
of their old nemesis. Last year, when both teams played in the same
region, the Owls won a pair from the Wildcats, one being in the
playoffs. It also meant that the seniors on the Livingston Academy
team never beat Smith County during their four years.
"We beat them when we were kids," LA runningback Jamey
Vaughn managed to say with a little smile. "But since then,
they just have had our number.
"They came in here expecting to win and they threw things
at us that we couldn't stop. Hats off to 'em, they did what they
had to do and we certainly didn't."
A couple things the Owls "threw" were three touchdown
passes in the first half, then used the powerful running of 5'6Ó
Jonathan Evans to balance an attack that simply ran over the Wildcats
through much of three quarters, then held on for the 5-point victory.
Maynard later explained, "Things kinda went our way tonight.
It was our night and our coaches really had the kids ready to play.
We did a few things different tonight that we haven't done this
year, and I think that caught Livingston off guard. Then, when they
did finally get on their game, it was too late."
Just to see if the Wildcats had paid attention to scouting reports,
the Owls lined up on the very first play of the game and tossed
a 56-yard scoring strike from junior quarterback Patrick Sanders
to Billy Plummer. Two series later, after LA's Wilson Cates fumbled
at the Smith County 27, Plummer hauled in another Sanders' strike,
this time for 73 yards. And almost before the Senior Night crowd
had found their seats, the Owls were on top 12-0.
The Owls then attempted an on-side kick. When Joe Tackett pounced
on the loose ball, it was apparent Livingston had once again been
caught napping. Eight plays later, Smith heaved another pass, this
time caught by Corey Rigsby on a deflection. With a minute still
remaining in the first quarter, Smith County was on top 20-0.
Lineman Jacob Coffey said after the game, "That first quarter
just simply killed us. We let them get two long passes for touchdowns,
get an on-side kick off, and fumbled twice when we were moving the
"You just can't do that against a well-coached team and expect
to come back and win.
"After we settled down, we played much better. But we had
already dug the hole and simply couldn't crawl out of it,"
On the first series of the second period, the Wildcats started
to get in form. In just three plays, LA marched 34 yards with a
touchdown coming on a 15-yard pass from Cates to Jake Peterman.
After Jonathan McGill added the point-after, the Cats trailed by
13 at 20-7.
But it appeared Livingston just couldn't stand prosperity. On the
kickoff, Evans rambled off 40 yards to put the Owls in business
at midfield. A steady diet of Evans inside and outside ended when
the runningback bulled his way in from the 21. At intermission,
Smith County held a 26-7 advantage.
Midway through the third period, the Wildcats appeared to take
hold of the situation. Marching 68 yards on 9 plays, Livingston
used the talents of Cates, Vaughn, and Mike Jones-LaRue to pound
the Smith County defense. Jones-LaRue went the final 4 yards, and
McGill again added the point-after. The deficit was now 12 with
the score 26-14.
With a little over 4 minutes remaining in the game, Livingston
again went to work. Cates took to the air, connecting with Peterman
twice, once for 42 yards. A touchdown came on a 5-yard pass from
Cates to Levi Holt. With 1:25 left in the game, Livingston now trailed
by 5 at 26-21.
But time ran out as the Owls were awarded the ball after an on-side
kick that apparently could have gone either way. Smith County then
ran out the clock. Offensive Line Coach Bruce Lamb said, "We
can't play this way this week and expect to have any chance of winning.
We have to go to Knoxville Fulton, and they are the defending state
champs. They won big tonight, and they have to beat us to have a
shot at the playoffs. So you know they will be ready.
"Certainly, we are disappointed in our performance tonight,
but that's behind us now. We can't change anything, but we can take
our mistakes and try to eliminate them this week.
"We simply have to if we want to have any chance of winning.
"We are a good team," Lamb added. "Tonight we just
didn't play up to our ability, and you can't explain why. Sometimes
it just goes that way. We'll regroup and get after it tomorrow.
I'm sure we'll be ready Friday."
The loss dropped Livingston Academy's overall record to 5-4. The
Cats' region record stands at 3-2.
Wildcats bow out
in region tournament
MaryJane Young/OCN Sports
The LA Wildcats ended the 2005 volleyball season in the Region
4-A/AA Tournament held at Livingston Academy. The Cats lost to Portland
in five games. LA won the first game, 25-21, lost the second and
third 22-25 and 21-25, won the fourth 26-24, then lost the deciding
game 7-15. Portland was defeated by Greenbrier in the championship
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Outlaws lose playoff
game to Clay County
Kevin Donaldson/Dale Hollow HORIZON
Overton County's Brock McCoin races toward the sideline with
a Clay County defender in hot pursuit in the Middle Tennessee Youth
Football Conference playoff game for 3rd place. The playoff was
held at Tennessee Tech last Saturday. Clay County defeated the Outlaws
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Overton County News
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Livingston, Tennessee 38570