Lions survive Lynn Camp comeback

Published 10:00 am Tuesday, October 24, 2023

By Shane Shackleford

Contributing Writer

There are several notable rivalries in the 13th Region.

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Middlesboro and Bell County.

Harlan and Harlan County.

Williamsburg and Whitley County.

Another rivalry with its footing in the past is the Pineville vs. Lynn Camp.

The rivals, only separated by about 40 miles along U.S. 25E, always provide for some fireworks and hard-nosed football regardless of their respective records. The 2023 version was no different, as the Lions jumped out to a 29-7 halftime lead and had to survive a furious Wildcat rally in the fourth quarter to win 29-23.

The win was significant in the Class A District 7 race, as the Lions secured the third seed in the playoff bracket and date at Paintsville in the first round of the postseason. At the same time, the Wildcats will assume the fifth spot in the district race and travel to Middlesboro.

“We came out and played good, solid football,” Pineville coach Allen Harris said. “I think we got overconfident in the second half, and Lynn Camp did a great job taking us out of our game plan. We did enough to get the win at the end of the day, that’s all that matters.”

Pineville (2-7) took the opening kickoff and marched down the field, scoring on a 47-yard pass from freshman quarterback Deakon Partin to senior wideout Wyatt Caldwell. The two-point conversion toss from Partin to Caldwell staked the Lions to a quick 8-0 lead.

The Lion defense held on their opening series and forced a Wildcat punt, and the Lions wasted no time scoring again on a 33-yard toss to Caldwell again from Partin to extend the advantage to 15-0 at the end of the first quarter.

Lynn Camp (2-7) answered with a drive of its own and scored on a 1-yard dive by quarterback D.J. Wren. The extra point was good and cut the Lions lead to 15-7.

The Lions took possession and scored on their third straight drive on a 3-yard pass from Partin to junior Kaiden Robbins. Sophomore Landon Robbins added the two-point conversion on a spectacular dive into paydirt to extend the Lions’ lead to 22-7.

The Lions forced a Wildcat fumble and scored on the ensuing drive on a 1-yard dive from junior Sawyer Thompson. Sophomore Zak Brown’s kick was good and the Pineville advantage grew to 29-7 at the half.

The third quarter was marred by excessive penalty flags on both squads as neither team was able to establish any traction offensively. As a result, the lead stayed at 29-7 entering the fourth quarter.

The Cats were able to break through on the scoreboard on a Jason Lowe 53-yard fumble return for a score. Wren added the conversion to cut the PHS advantage to 29-15.

The Cats took their final drive in for a score on a 5-yard scoring toss from Wren to Lowe with 40 seconds to play.

The Lions close their regular season schedule with a trip to Hyden to visit the Leslie County Eagles next Friday night. The Wildcats close their campaign at home against the McCreary Central Raiders.

Scoring Summary

Pineviile 14-15-0-0 — 29

Lynn Camp 0-7-0-16 — 23

First Quarter

P — Caldwell 47 pass from Partin (Partin to Caldwell)

P— Caldwell 33 pass from Partin (conversion failed)

Second Quarter

LC — Wren 1 run (kick good)

P — K. Robbins 3 pass from Partin (L. Robbins run )

P —Thompson 1 run (Brown kick)

Fourth Quarter

LC — Lowe 53 fumble return (Wren run)

LC — Lowe 5 pass from Wren (Wren to Lowe)