Pineville minces McCreary, 28-14

Published 12:11 pm Monday, August 26, 2019

The Mountain Lions notched their first win of the Randy Frazier era on a soggy field at McCreary Central on Friday night, 28-14. After taking an early lead prior to falling behind, Pineville managed to hold the Raiders’ offense in check, taking the ball away five times, allowing them to secure a season-opening victory.

“I’m very pleased with the way these guys fought,” said Frazier. “I think they thought it was going to be easy after the first touchdown. All of a sudden coach Bozeman, their defensive coordinator, dials up some things that we just weren’t ready for. They brought eight or nine guys, and we had a lot of trouble moving the ball through air.

“But then we took Colby (Frazier) and Scooby (Morris) and rotated them during the second half as a nice one-two punch and did a really good job. The line picked it up and everyone stepped up. We did a good job of answering back when we needed to.”

Email newsletter signup

The Mountain Lions started their season off on a three-and-out drive with negative yardage. However, they quickly regained possession by recovering a fumble on an errant snap by the center on a punt attempt by the Raiders. Pineville recovered the fumble inside the McCreary 20-yard line allowing for great field position.

After a quick pick up of eight yards on the first snap of their second possession, Colby Frazier scored his first touchdown as a Mountain Lion on a 12-yard sweep, diving across the goal line for six. Luke Naylor added the PAT to give Pineville a 7-0 lead with 8:11 remaining in the first.

The Raiders got things going through the air on their second possession, compiling two straight first downs, prior to being held short on a third down screen pass. On a fourth down and four to go, McCreary Central attempted a down-field throw that was picked off by Scooby Morris, giving Pineville it’s third possession of the game from inside their own 20-yard line with 4:00 remaining in the first quarter.

Penalties and field conditions hampered the next Mountain Lion drive as a first down run by Morris was negated by a holding call and Pineville fumbled the ball, before falling back on top of it. After another first down run by Frazier, the Mountain Lions had their first turnover, an interception on a throw to Landon Couch from Reece Capps.

The Raiders took over from inside their own 25-yard line, with Pineville maintaining a 7-0 lead with under two minutes remaining in the opening frame.

On the ensuing play, the Mountain Lions took the ball back from the Raiders after a big hit from the Pineville defense forced a fumble by the McCreary quarterback. However, on the very next play, the Mountain Lions again turned the ball over on a fumble by Morris. The Raiders ended up gaining about eight yards out of the whacky three-play stretch that saw three total turnovers, taking over from their own 32-yard line trailing 7-0 with less than two minutes remaining in the first quarter.

Unable to capitalize on their next offensive possession, the Mountain Lion defense stepped up as Capps came down with an interception that he returned 25 yards to help set Pineville up with good field position. However, neither team was able to generate offense throughout the remainder of the second or third quarters.

Pineville held a 7-0 advantage until the Raiders notched their first touchdown of the year on a 5-yard quarterback keeper five seconds into the fourth quarter to knot the game at 7-all.

With just under eight and a half minutes remaining in the game, Frazier notched his second touchdown of the evening on an 18-yard scamper through the c-gap, powering his way into the end zone to extend the Pineville lead to 13-7.

The Raiders grabbed their first lead of the game just 30 game seconds later, on a 74-yard kick return for a touchdown and a successful PAT. On the ensuing kickoff from McCreary Central, Morris returned the kick for 65 yards and was downed just inside the Raiders’ 18-yard line.

On the following play, Morris hit pay dirt on a 17-yard run, giving the Mountain Lions back the lead. Pineville successfully converted a two-point attempt to extend their lead to 21-14 with just under seven minutes remaining.

McCreary Central was held to less than 30 yards for the remainder of the game as Pineville added another score from Morris and a successful PAT from Naylor, cementing a 14-point victory with just under four minutes remaining in the contest.

Capps lead the way defensively for the Lions with three interceptions but was followed closely by Frazier with 10 solo tackles. Morris anchored the Pineville rushing attack with 130 rushing yards on 15 carries, including two touchdowns. Frazier added as almost as much in the run game with 110 yards on 19 carries with two touchdowns as well.

Pineville totaled 267 yards of offense during the game, 259 of which were rushing yards.

“It’s great to start out 1-0,” said R. Frazier. “But it’s like I told these guys, our district is what we are really worried about. McCreary Central is a real good team, they’ve got a great coaching staff. They’re improving a whole lot up here. We came up here as an underdog, everyone told us we were going to lose up here tonight.

“I felt like in the first half, we left some points on the board. We felt like at halftime that it should have been 21-0. We had some costly penalties but our defense held tough and kept them off the scoreboard as long as they could. We’ve got to get better at punching the ball in when we have our opportunities, that’s one of the biggest takeaways from this game for me. I’m very proud of the way these guys answered, not once, but twice. We’re thrilled to start 1-0.”

Pineville moves on to week two of the 2019 season where they face off against Knott County Central on the road at 7:30 p.m. on Friday.