Logan County, ACS primed for epic playoff showdown
The regular season has ended, and it was another magical one for Logan County.
Ofter winning just one game in four seasons from 2012-16, the Cougars (9-1) have only lost two games in their last 21 and have a chance to keep that magic going when they host Allen County-Scottsville in the first round of the 4A playoffs on Friday evening at Cougar Stadium.
However, the Patriots will not go away easily.
Entering Friday’s match-up, the Patriots are hungry for a playoff victory after being knocked out in the first round by Madisonville-North Hopkins last season.
The Maroons won 28-7 when they hosted ACS (6-4) in last season’s playoffs. Logan County defeated Warren Central 54-18 in the first round last season before falling to Hopkinsville, 43-8, in the second round.
This season, Madisonville has been the only team to beat the Cougars as the Maroons took a 21-17 decision in Russellville on Oct. 12.
Logan County will bring its powerfully balanced offense into its home stadium on Friday to provide the utmost of challenges to the Patriots.
The Cougars have put up an astounding 41.5 points per contest this season behind 2,333 rushing yards and 1,861 passing yards.
Junior running back Gary Hardy leads the charge for the Cougars as he has racked up 1,334 rushing yards (133 per game) with 16 touchdowns on 153 carries. Junior quarterback Tyler Ezell follows with 396 yards rushing and 10 touchdowns on 51 carries.
Ezell has completed 86-of-139 pass attempts for 1,387 yards and 11 touchdowns as opposed to just five interceptions. Ezell has been fighting an injury over the past few games and his status is unknown. Shall Ezell not be able to play, the duties will fall on another trusty arm in senior Nate Woodall, who has completed 27-of-61 pass attempts for 456 yards and six touchdowns with just two interceptions.
Sophomore Maurice Gordon leads the Cougars with 31 catches for 455 yards and four touchdowns. Senior Dontavius Blann follows with 2o catches for 323 yards and five touchdowns while Anthony Woodard has added four touchdown catches.
While the Cougar offense has put up 415 points this season, the defense has also answered the call, allowing just 92 points to opponents and under 1,000 yards in both passing and rushing.
Workhorse senior defensive lineman Caden McKinnis leads Logan County on defense with 83 tackles, 17 for a loss and seven sacks. Zach Yates adds 75 tackles for the Cougars while Collier Kempf has tallied 14 tackles for loss and five sacks.
The Cougar defense has forced 14 fumbles and 13 interceptions, Third Bell and Tristan Blake each with three picks. Blake returned an interception for a touchdown.
The Patriots’ offense has put up 260 points over the season through a fairly balanced system.
Senior running back Kelly Weger has carried a big load for ACS with 1,052 yards and 13 touchdowns on 160 carries.
Sophomore quarterback Trace McIntyre has completed 44-of-76 pass attempts for 616 yards and seven touchdowns with no interceptions. Senior receiver Jacob Lightfoot has been on the receiving end of 19 of those passes for 429 yards and four touchdowns.
Junior linebacker Dalton Cline leads the Patriots’ defense with 72 tackles. Dillon Rookstool has racked up 13 tackles for loss and three sacks while Peyton Huff adds 12 tackles for loss with a team-high four sacks.
The Patriots have forced nine fumbles and seven interceptions, two picks each coming from Nick Cooper and Cayden Ross.
Clay Manlove; @ctmanlove58