Kyle leads Jackets in rout of Harlan

Published 8:01 am Friday, September 13, 2019

Versatility in any sport is a wonderful trait for any athlete to have and any team to have at its disposal. When that versatility mixes with ability, special things can happen.

If there is a picture beside the definition of football versatility, then that picture could be of Middlesboro senior athlete Jabari Kyle.

The Jackets do-it-all weapon had over 130 yards of total offense to help the Jackets improve to 3-1 with a 42-6 victory over the visiting Harlan Green Dragons on Friday night at Bradner Stadium.

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There was no Friday the 13th nightmare scenario for the Jackets as they rolled up over 400 yards of total offense to stake themselves to a 28-0 halftime lead that they would not relinquish.

The Dragons (0-4) were led offensively by running back Ethan Clem with 80 rushing yards. Quarterback Connor Scearse added 40 yards passing on the night before injuring his shoulder in the third quarter.

In the first quarter, Kyle electrified the home crowd with a 28 yard touchdown reception from quarterback Eric Helton on the Jackets first possession and a 57 yard touchdown run on the second to stake the Jackets out in front 14-0. At the end of the quarter, Kyle added another 57 yard touchdown jaunt to make the score 21-0 MHS.

By the second quarter, Harlan began to find its rhythm on offense as the Dragons put together a 13-play drive that took over seven minutes off the clock. During the drive, Clem ripped off a 35 yard run and Scearse completed a 19-yard pass to John Eldridge as the Dragons marched to the Jacket 11. However, the Jackets would hold on fourth down and keep Harlan out of the end zone.

The Jackets Tyler Kelly had a big quarter in the second frame, adding 68 yards rushing and a one yard touchdown plunge to extend the Middlesboro lead to 28-0 at half.

The third quarter opened up with the Jackets in possession of the ball and on third down, a Middlesboro fumble led to a 73 yard return for a touchdown by Clem to get the Dragons on the board at 28-6. The conversion failed but proved to be costly as Scearse scrambled and injured his shoulder on the play. He would not return for HHS.

After a MHS punt, the Dragons had a costly turnover as they would throw an interception on third down. MHS linebacker Craig Brock would complete the “pick six” for 54 yards to extend the lead to 35-6.

The Jackets and Dragons would exchange turnovers as MHS would fumble and HHS would throw another interception. The Jackets would convert their turnover to a touchdown as Helton would return the errant throw for 12 yards for the score to set the final score at 42-6.

Middlesboro place kicker Thaisin Sin had a big night on special teams, going six for six on extra point attempts.

Harlan will have an open date next week before hosting Jenkins as the Cavaliers pay a visit for a district matchup. The Jackets will host Pineville next week in a county rival showdown.


Middlesboro 42, Harlan 6

Harlan0. 0. 6. 0 — 6

Middlesboro 14. 14. 7. 7. — 42

M- Kyle 28 yd. Pass from Helton (Sin kick).

M- Kyle 57 yd. Run (Sin kick)

M- Kyle 57 yd. Run (Sin kick)

M- Kelly 1 yd. Run (Sin kick)

H- Clem 73 yd. Fumble Return (conversion failed)

M- Brock 54 yd. Interception Return (Sin kick)

M- Helton 12 yd. Interception Return (Sin kick)