• Bill Caine, Woodford Sun Sports

Football Jackets suffer loss in home opener

BRODY MCCOUN scores on a quarterback keeper against Madison Central. (Photo by Bill Caine)

The Woodford County High School football team was defeated 53-7 in its home opener by Madison Central Friday night, the 30th home opener at Community Stadium. The game started off in a bizarre fashion, with fumbles on the first four possessions that led to a combined three turnovers. The Jackets got on the scoreboard first after recovering a fumble on the Indians' two-yard line. After being stuffed on the first attempt, quarterback Brody McCoun scored on a keeper up the middle. "I thought early on we had energy and the kids were fired up," said Coach Dennis Johnson. "We got to some balls that were on the ground and put us in position to make a play."

Madison Central came roaring back and scored on the next possession in a few plays. After a two-point conversion, the Indians held an 8-7 lead. The Jackets fumbled the ball on the following possession, and the Indians capitalized once again to bring the score to 15-7. "We need to put together better drives and be more consistent," said Johnson. "Between fumbles and bad snaps, we just have to be better than that. We make one or two plays but then give up a big one both offensively and defensively. That's the stuff we need to clean up to be better." On the ensuing possession, Woodford County was forced to punt but was able to keep the ball after the Indians were called for a penalty. Running into the kicker was called against the defense and Woodford was on the move. Quinton Turner made a heads-up play, moving out of the pocket and finding Lee Kain downfield for a big gain. The play was called back on a blocking in the back penalty on the Jackets. Woodford was forced to punt. The kick was blocked and returned for a score by the Indians. "We are going to be better," said Johnson. "We are young. It's a growing process, but I've seen improvements. We just have to be consistent. They had some scores at the end that made the score look worse than it was. The kids fought hard; we just have to tighten up some packages and get back after it." On the next possession, Turner hit Ryan Duke, Lee Kain, and Ben Nash on pass completions before the Jackets were stopped on fourth down and turned the ball back over to the Indians. Madison Central eventually kicked a field goal. At halftime, new inductees to the Woodford County Public Schools Hall of Fame were introduced. Dr. Mark Gormley Jr., John Lodmell, Teresa Jones James, James McAfee, Jack Kain, Walter Bradley, Decima Carl Osborne, Tanya Mirilovich, Dan Cassity and Ralph Combs were announced as the Class of 2017 inductees. The game was stopped for nearly 25 minutes after Kameron Sunbom was injured. Medical personnel attended to him, and he was carted off the field. The crowd gave Sunbom a big hand as he raised his hand up while being wheeled off. When the action resumed, the Jackets were overpowered by the Indians' attack. Woodford County was on its heels for much of the second half and the Indians scored a pair of late touchdowns. One interesting note is that Woodford County dominated the time of possession. Madison Central scored on quick hit drives, but otherwise, Woodford did a good job of holding onto the ball as the game progressed. "I thought Ryan Duke had a heck of a game tonight," said Johnson. "Mason Smith and Jayden Hamilton were also very good tonight. We played two tough teams, and if we can keep our heads together, we will be okay."

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