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80 Years Ago



Junior Wildcats Cheerleaders compete at TTU
Wildcats struck by Cobras in second round playoff

Junior Wildcats Cheerleaders compete at TTU

The Overton County Junior Wildcats Squad competed at the TTU Cheer and Dance Classic on Saturday, Nov. 14. Despite battling injury and illness for the two weeks leading up to the competition, the team gave a good performance. Coach Farris stated, "We were disappointed with our third place finish in the Cheer Division. Our routine was solid with the exception of our pyramid sequence not hitting. All other stunts hit, but the pyramid cost us." The team came back with an excellent routine in the Pom Division and took first place.
Now the team will spend three weeks preparing for what will be the biggest competition of the season, Jamfest Nationals in Gatlinburg on December 5-6.
Squad members in the front row are Junior Wildcats Katy Smith, Victoria Potts, Hope Stephens, Jane Emily Dycus, Hannah Jolley, Bailey Kennedy, Salena Geist, (back row) Mady Hale, Katie Lee, Rachel Jolley, Tessa Beaty, Alyssa Farris, Laiton Pigg and Hallie Thompson.

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Wildcats struck by Cobras in second round playoff

Josh Scott photo
Livingston Academy’s offensive line gives quarterback Brannon McCoin plenty of time to toss a pass in Friday’s second round Class 4A Playoff game held at Tom Davis Memorial Stadium.

Josh Scott photo
Senior Seth Kilgore, #62, zeroes in on the Cobra quarterback.

Josh Scott photo
LA junior Zach Green gets blocking out front on a long run for the Wildcats in relief of the injured Paul Daniels.

Josh Scott photo
LA freshman Creed Hayes looks for running room.


By Mac McLeod,
OCN Sports

This time around there were no cheers, no hollering, or slapping each other on the back. This time the locker room of the Livingston Academy Wildcats was a more somber place with cheers and screams replaced by an occasional sniffle and a tear here and there. Where for the past several weeks victory was greeted with celebration, now it was reality, and for some it was a little hard to take.
That was until offensive coordinator Danny McCoin took the floor.

“Go ahead and be sad, but for only 15 minutes,” the experienced coach started out.

“Then forget about what happened tonight and think back about what you have done this year. It was a great year. You won eight games. Think back when you were freshmen, you only won one. Then when you were sophomores. You only won one.

Now remember when you were juniors. You only won one. Now look how far you have come.

“Its going to hurt for a while, but you’ll get over it,” McCoin continued. “Most people would have quit three years ago, and some did, but you didn’t. You kept going and losing tonight won’t take a thing away from what you have accomplished this year. I am proud to be a part of all of that. Good job fellows.Great year.”

And with that, the pain somehow settled down.

After going 8-3 in the regular season, the Wildcats ran into a very athletic group of Cobras from Whites Creek Friday night in the first round of the state football playoffs, and after holding close for one half, struggled in the second half to drop a 32-10 decision.

In his words to the team, McCoin wanted every player in the room to recall what had transpired over the past four years and how many times they had been simply whipped by a superior team but never quit. Twenty-four freshmen played four years ago and 14 refused to quit despite all the disappointment.

But for senior quarterback Brannon McCoin, who has played perhaps 95% of the offensive plays over that four years, Friday’s game had a little more special meaning.

“I remember my first snap from center and I’ll remember my last one,” the well spoken senior recalled. “That first play at Trousdale was horrifying. All I wanted to do was get the ball and give it to anybody that would come by and get out of the way. Tonight, my last play was an incomplete pass, but there was a lot of experience in between.

“This year the seniors stepped up and took command of the team. They showed leadership and it was the main reason we did as well as we did. We will never forget each other and what we had to go through here to get as far as we did. Every one of those 14 was a big part of our success,” the quarterback added.

And around the room it went. Seniors were hugging each other in a fashion that showed this team had not forgotten where it had come from or what it had accomplished this season. It was over, but it had been so much fun and perhaps it could have continued on a game or two more.

Or perhaps it couldn’t have.

Whites Creek came to the game with a 7-4 record facing the Wildcats who were 8-3 and for the first 24 minutes, the game was as close as the two teams’ records. Both moved the ball and both put points on the board.

The Cobras struck first marching 90 yards on eight plays, the biggest being a 39-yard pass play. Quarterback J Booker went the final yard to put the visitors up 6-0 after missing the point-after attempt.

Livingston them stormed right back on its next possession and rumbled 66 yards to put the ball at the four where McCoin went the final yards. Huitt’s point-after was good and the Wildcats took their only lead of the night, 7-6.

During the march, tailback Paul Daniels was slightly injured and defensive linebacker Zack Green stepped in and did an outstanding job, moving the ball 46 yards in the series. Daniels returned for the remainder of the game and would have 56 hard earned yards on 14 tries.

Whites Creek came right back to take a 12-7 lead and with 7:09 remaining in the first half, the Cobras were on top to stay. Livingston did close the gap to 12-10 with 48 seconds remaining in the half when Huitt was good on a 23-yard field goal.

In the second half, the game changed completely. In the first half, one team would score then the other would answer. Livingston had eight first downs to seven for the Cobras. The Wildcats would collect 144 yards of total offense while the visitors had 183. For the first 24 minutes it was anybody’s game.

Then Cobra running back Clifford Jetton came alive. After being somewhat corralled in the first half, the strong running back broke loose and proved to be much more than the Wildcats had bargained for. It was a steady diet of Jetton in the second half.

On 18 carries, the powerful back racked up 174 yards in the third and fourth quarters and accounted for two touchdowns.

Jetton was just more than the Wildcats could handle. On the night he would accumulate 243 yards on the ground.

Meanwhile, the Wildcats could go nowhere. Whereas in the first half when Daniels along with Creed Hayes and McCoin could get yardage when they needed it, the second half was totally different. Livingston managed only 17 ground yards in the remaining two frames, but did put 108 yards on the books through the air. Huitt pulled in three McCoin passes for 41 yards while Hayes got a pair for 63 yards, Jon Ledbetter grabbed one for 25, and Dillion Roberts had one for 10 yards. Dylan Harris and Roberts each recovered a fumble and Huitt had the lone interception.

Defensively, Green led the way with six tackles while Roberts and Hayden Hill each had five. Tracy McDonald and Jacob Beu each were credited with four, Seth Kilgore and Brock McCoin had three each, and Brannon McCoin, Ty Eldridge, Talon Sircy, Daniel Miller, and Dylan Ashlock each had two.

“Nothing we say here tonight will make this (loss) any better,” head coach Bruce Lamb concluded. “Be proud of what you did because I am proud of what you did and every coach in this room is proud of what you did. You came from the bottom of the barrel to the top and in the process, you showed us what fine young men you are. Anybody can go out and win them all, it’s those who have to struggle and work hard who really appreciate what they did.

“You 14 seniors are to be commended for what you did,” Lamb added. “When most would jump off the boat, you stayed and kept bailing water. In the end, you saved the ship. You are the winners. I know I speak for all the coaches here in this room when I say, ‘thanks for taking us along.’”

Over in one corner, two senior offensive linemen, Miller and Justin Hill were greeting their teammates one by one, then probably put it as good as it could be put: “We are proud of what we accomplished here,“ they agreed. “The experience we gained each year, although it was tough, made us better and better and for those who stayed with the program, this 8-4 season showed this team is a winner. Just proud to be part of it.”

The Yardstick
13 1st Downs 17
144 Yds Rushing 272
139 Yds passing 100
18/7 Pass Att/comp 9/5
1 Pass Int. by 1
0 Fumbles lost 2
4/26 Punts/Avg. 1/29
5 Yds Pent. 55

Score by quarters:
LA – 0 10 0 0 – 10
WC – 6 6 12 8 – 32

WC – Booker, 5 run. Pass failed.
LA – McCoin, 4 run. Huitt kick.
WC – Barnes, 3 pass from Booker. Run failed.
LA – Huitt, 23 field goal.
WC – Jetton, 8 run. Run failed.
WC – Fleming, 41 fumble recovery. Run failed.
WC – Jetton, 31 run. Booker run.

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Overton County News
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Livingston, Tennessee 38570
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