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80 Years Ago



Jr. B Outlaws defeat DeKalb for championship
Jr. Outlaws fall to Owls in championship
LA Wildcats trounce Macon County Tigers 31-13

Lady Cats win district
LA Volleyball takes district runner-up

Jr. B Outlaws defeat DeKalb for championship

Ginger Neely/Action Sports
Overton County’s Junior B Outlaws celebrate bringing home the gold with Sunday’s win.

Ginger Neely/Action Sports
Jr. B Outlaws quarterback Will McDonald, #18, stiff-arms a defender to gain yards in Sunday’s championship game.

Ginger Neely/Action Sports
Jr. B Outlaws tailback Nate Neely, #1, dives in for the extra-point conversion in Sunday’s championship win.

Defending champion Jr. B Outlaws of Overton County (6-1) faced the only opponent to give them a defeat in the 2009 campaign, DeKalb County, in the championship game on Sunday, Oct. 25 at Tennessee Tech.

Outlaws and Tigers battled back-and-forth in what turned out to be a dramatic contest, with Overton County winning 14-13.

Overton County’s offense was led by Nate Neely with 194 yards on the ground and 2 rushing touchdowns.

Overton County’s defense was led by Wesley Smith, who had 7 tackles, including a game-saver in the 4th quarter.

Junior B Outlaws game
Jr. Outlaws 14, DeKalb Co. 13
Individual Statistics

Will McDonald 0-1

Lead Rushers
Nate Neely 29-194-2-2
Will McDonald 6-34-0-0

Lead Tacklers
Wesley Smith 7; Shane Highers 4; Nate Neely 3; Nathan Carwile 3; Will McDonald 3; Whit Terry 2; Matthew Sells 2; Braden Medlin 2; Andrew Beaty 1; Bryer Mosley 1; Carl Spurgin 1.

To get to the championship game, the Junior B team shut out the Fentress County Purple Bulldogs 20-0 on Saturday, Oct. 17 to go to a record of 6-1 on the year. The Junior B team dominated from start to finish with their powerful running game led by quarterback Will McDonald and tailback Nate Neely.

Junior B Outlaws game
Jr. Outlaws 20, Fentress (P) 0
Individual Statistics

Will McDonald 0-2

Lead Rushers
Will McDonald 11-138-1-0
Nate Neely 12-67-1-1
Nathan Carwile 1-3-0-1
Wesley Smith 1-1-0-0
Matthew Sells 2-(-9)-0-0

Lead Tacklers
Nate Neely 9; Wesley Smith 4; Nathan Carwile 4; Brayden Hogue 3; Carl Spurgin 2; Matt Castle 1; Shane Highers 1; Samuel Coffey 1; Whit Terry 1.

Fumble Recovery
Nate Neely.

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Jr. Outlaws fall to Owls in championship
Ginger Neely/Action Sports
Jr. Outlaws tailback Wade Neely, #6, shoots through the middle for positive yardage in the championship game.

Ginger Neely/Action Sports
Jr. Outlaws fullback Chase Looper, #44, gains hard earned yards up the middle in the championship game Sunday.

Overton County’s Junior Outlaws (7-1) fell short to the Smith County Owls (7-0) on Championship Sunday, Oct. 25 at Tennessee Tech.

The Owls dominated the Outlaws from the start, leading 20-0 at the half.

The Outlaws tried to catch up, but it was too little, too late. The Jr. Outlaws finished as runner-up with a 7-2 record.

Junior Outlaws game
Jr. Outlaws 6, Smith Co. 20
Individual Statistics

Blake Qualls 1-2-(-3)
Cade Hammock 0-1-0

Wade Neely 1-(-3)

Lead Rushers
Cade Hammock 1-68-1
Wade Neely 14-37-0
Chase Looper 3-3-0
Blake Qualls 1-1-0
Jason Savage 1-0-0

Lead Tacklers
Blake Qualls 6; Wade Neely 5; Cade Hammock 5; Jake Craig 5; Will Sims 3; Chance Spears 3; Travis Hunter 2; Chase Looper 2; Cody Garrett 2; Austin Hawley 1; Joseph Thompson 1; Ethan Carr 1; Jarrett Key 1; Mitchell Ayers 1.

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LA Wildcats trounce Macon County Tigers 31-13

Julie Young photo
Livingston’s Creed Hayes gets yardage the hard way.

Julie Young photo
A good block out front frees Paul Daniels, #21, for a big gain against Macon County’s Tigers.

Julie Young photo
Jake Huitt kicks an extra-point for Livingston Academy.

Julie Young photo
Dillion Roberts, #39, and Ty Eldridge, #16, take down a Macon County runner in Friday’s Wildcats win at Lafayette.

By Mac McLeod,
OCN Sports

Back in August, there were high hopes around Livingston Academy’s football team that this would be the year the Wildcats would return to the playoffs. Although they had been beaten around for the past three years with only three wins to show for their efforts, players none-the-less were confident they had what it took to turn the program around.

Hopes are one thing and reality is another, but now after nine regular season games, LA is on the verge of returning to the playoffs just like they did in the years before 2006.

“And that’s why we have to win at DeKalb County next week” explained lineman Ridge Harris moments after he and his Wildcat teammates trounced Macon County on the road Friday night, 31-13. “Right now it looks like we are in, but a win next week will answer all the questions and leave no questions asked.”

Harris is definitely right. Despite the complicated TSSAA playoff program, it appears Livingston is in with a 7-3 or 6-4 mark traveling down the wildcard or best 4A team finish rules. A win against DeKalb could produce a home field advantage.

But that’s all a little on down the road. Friday night, LA went to Lafayette with one thing on its mind – collect regular season win number six, a feat that hasn’t been accomplished at the school since the 2004 season. Waiting for the Cats was an 0-8 Tiger team that had played one of the toughest schedules in Tennessee.

“We know how a team can be when it plays one strong team after another,” explained LA head coach Bruce Lamb after the game. “We went down that road.

That being understood, we knew they had a very good passing game and we would have to put more points on the boards than they would. We did and we had a very good game.

“We missed some tackles, but offensively and defensively, we did what we had to do.

“Our offensive line was outstanding tonight and looking at the game, we controlled just about everything out there. That made it look a little easier.”

Lamb and the Wildcats may have taken a page out of the Miami Dolphins’ playbook when they faced Payton Manning and the Colts several weeks back – don’t let the high-powered offense have the ball so they can’t score.

After winning the toss and electing to defer to the second half, the LA defense shut down the passing arm of record setting quarterback Dallas Grace on five plays and took over the ball at their own 30 at the 9:43 mark.

For the next nine minutes and 10 seconds all Macon County saw was the power running of Paul Daniels. Daniels to the right and Daniels to the left, and with each play, the chains moved five, seven, eight, etc. yards at a time. On the 70-yard drive, Daniels carried 12 times, the final time a one-yard crash into the endzone for the night’s first score. Jake Huitt nailed the first of what would be four extra points and Livingston led 7-0 with only 10 seconds remaining in the period.

Livingston’s second score of the night came late in the second frame after Creed Hayes intercepted a Macon County pass at his own 20. The ensuing drive was highlighted by a 46-yard run on a fourth and one situation at his own 39 by quarterback Brannon McCoin. A three-yard pass five plays later from McCoin to Jon Ledbetter put LA up by 14 with 22 seconds remaining in the half.

McCoin opened the second half with a 50-yard sprint on the first play from scrimmage to take the Cats down to the Tigers’ 15. Four plays later, Huitt split the uprights with a 30-yard field goal and LA upped its lead to 17-0.

But it would be impossible to hold the home team scoreless. On the season, the Tigers’ sophomore quarterback Dallas Grace had passed for 1,838 yards coming into the game and needed only 162 to pass 2,000 and a school record. With that many years in the air, it was only a matter time before Macon would get on the boards.

And it did midway through the third frame with a two-yards pass. The Tigers would score once more in the period on a 33-yard strike, but it simply wasn’t enough offense to keep up with the high-powered Wildcats.

“We knew he would throw a lot and the law of average will give you so many completions,“ pointed out linebacker Zack Green. “A lot of the yardage he got was with screen passes then pretty good runs. I thought we defended the pass pretty good, but we didn’t tackle well after the ball was in the hands of the receiver. We will have to work on that.”

On the night, Grace would throw the ball 39 times and connect on 25 and add 257 yards to his marks, but that would be no match for Livingston’s diverse offense.

The Wildcats would answer with 25 runs from Daniels for 106 yards, 11 chances from McCoin for 131 yards, and four from Hayes for an additional 20. In the process, McCoin would be dead on target on five of his 10 passes for 78 yards and had two dropped that would have added significantly to the total.

“Brannon was right on the money all night passing,” pointed out Huitt, the receiver of three throws that included two touchdowns. “His passing tonight was outstanding. I guess my biggest deal was hoping I wouldn’t drop one. The one where I caught the ball with nobody around me was so easy my only thought was ‘don’t drop it.’”

In response to Huitt’s praise, McCoin pointed out, “Tonight anybody could have thrown it because the offensive line was perfect. I had all kinds of time to find the receiver and throw the ball. It was one of those night you live for.”

A look at the big picture shows that the 31-13 win could well have been Livingston’s best total effort of the season. In just about all departments, the Wildcats were simply superior.

“We ran the ball well, we threw the ball well and we kept them (Macon) from connecting on passes that really hurt us,” Lamb added after the game. “I am so proud of this team. Each week we have gotten better and better. We’ve had a couple bumps in the road along the way, but that’s to be expected. Tonight I thought we gave a great effort on both sides of the ball and showed a lot of class in doing it.

“Now let’s get ready for next week,” the coach challenged his players at the end of the game.

Along with the runs, the touchdowns, the pass completions, etc. there were some other individual accomplishments. Ty Eldridge and Green were each credited with seven tackles. Hayden Hill and Tracy McDonald each added six, McCoin, Huitt, and Dillion Roberts each had four, and Harris, Kilgore, and Jacob Beu had two each.

Roberts, returning to the team after being suspended for three weeks was “just so glad to be back” and gets credit for two big sacks that threw the Tigers back for a total of 11 yards. McCoin and Hayes each had an interception, and Kilgore had a fumble recovery.

This week’s game with DeKalb County will be played on Thursday, Oct. 29, and may be moved to Tennessee Tech due to very bad field conditions at Smithville.

The Yardstick

17 1st Downs 17
270 Yards Rushing 62
78 Yards Passing 257
10/5 Passes Att./Comp. 39/25
2 Passes Int. By 0
0 Fumbles Lost 1
3/31 Punts/Avg. 1/27
10 Yards Pent. 38

Score by quarters:
LA – 7 7 10 7 – 31
MC – 0 0 13 0 – 13

LA – Daniels, 1 run. Huitt kick.
LA – Ledbetter, three pass from McCoin. Huitt kick.
LA – Huitt, 30-yard field goal.
MC – Shockley, 2 pass from Grace. Smith kick.
LA – Huitt, 36 pass from McCoin. Huitt kick.
MC – Shockley, 33 pass from Grace. Pass fails.
LA – Huitt, 26 pass from McCoin. Huitt kick.

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Lady Cats win district

Justin Perdue photo
Coach King and the girls celebrate their fourth district championship in a row.

By Justin Perdue,
OCN Sports

With a dominating regular season, the Lady Wildcats showed their toughness down the stretch in this year’s district tournament.

On Tuesday, Oct. 20, the Lady Cats played the Smith County Lady Owls, and in a dominating performance LA rolled on to the District 8 A-AA championship game, winning 13-2.

In the championship game, played last Thursday, Oct. 22, the Lady Cats faced a more formidable opponent in the DeKalb County Lady Tigers.

In this physical matchup emotions ran high on the field and from both crowds. But LA’s overall skill and leadership from the upperclassmen proved too much for the Lady Tigers. The Lady Wildcats won the 2009 District 8 A-AA championship for a fourth year in a row by a final score of 4-1.

Goals were scored by Kat Nigro (2), Heather Marshall, and Jenna Smith.

The Lady Wildcats advanced to regionals where they were scheduled to play Chattanooga Christian at home on Tuesday, Oct. 27.

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LA Volleyball takes district runner-up

Livingston Academy took the runner-up spot in the District 8 A-AA Volleyball Tournament.

By Josh Scott,
OCN Sports

What started out as rough, turned into satisfaction and for Livingston Academy Lady Wildcats Volleyball, adversity had shone its face more than once this past season, and although sometimes the season looked to end quickly, the Cats just kept clawing away.

It all started two weeks ago in Smith County, where number 3 seed Livingston Academy took on the Lady Bees of Upperman High. After a back-and-forth game, the Wildcats managed to win the match going to five games, where the Lady Wildcats would also pick up their first win in a 5-game match all year long.

In the district final, the Wildcats played another common foe in the Smith County Lady Owls. Again, the match went five games, but this time the Lady Wildcats could not overcome the deficit in the final game and fell to the Lady Owls. With the loss though, the girls captured an automatic lock for the regionals, as well as the another second place finish in the district.

But, the bad thing was, the Wildcats would face Chattanooga Christian in their region semi-final match-up, a Chattanooga Christian team that has been a dominating force in Tennessee volleyball for a long time.

The Lady Wildcats faltered against the quickness and strength of the Lady Chargers and fell in three games.

Lady Wildcat Coach Christie Jenkins said, “We played really well in our district games. The Upperman game was a huge win because it was an upset. Upperman thought they had a great chance to win and to upset them was just amazing.”

But the overall excitement didn’t end there, as Jenkins knows that her team has taken a lot away from the things they have encountered all year long.

“To make it to the region, and see a team like that, I think our girls realized how quick volleyball can be,” she continued. “They want to play that style, and I can teach it to them if they will listen.”

This team with no senior leadership had to replace big guns Kilgore, West, and Sells from a year ago, and managed to pull together at once.

“The whole thing was just amazing,” Jenkins concluded. “The girls never gave up, and kept fighting. Earlier in the year, that wasn’t who we were. It was a hard season, but overall, I’m happy to get as far as we did.

“I knew we had a chance because of our athleticism, but we were inexperienced. They surpassed my expectations.”

As for next year, Coach Jenkins said, “We’ll definitely be ready to go.”

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Overton County News
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