BUDDY BUFFORD FIELD, LINCOLNTON -- Trion's Bulldogs controlled the ball for most of the game, but couldn't find a way to score. Two long passes to Rusty Scott helped the Devils to two TDs and a 14-0 first round victory.
Lincoln County will host Eagles Landing Christian Academy in a second-round game this Friday. ELCA, the Region 5-A runner-up, is riding a 9-game winning streak and features a high-powered offense.
Trion's grind-it-out offensive style allowed the visitors to consume nearly two-thirds of the game clock, over 30:49 to the 17:11. This also showed in the number of offensive plays, with Trion running 64 plays to the Devils' 29.
But many of those plays were for short gains. The Bulldogs totalled 183 yards to the Devils' 198. The two long passes caught by Rusty Scott, a 66-yard TD reception and a 39-yard catch, setup the LC points.
Trion took the opening kickoff and rushed into Devil territory before Ercell Daniel grabbed an interception. Two plays later Garrett Mohr threw long to Rusty Scott, who took the ball away from the Bulldog defender then turned and ran 30 yards to the endzone. The 66-yard play put the Devils ahead with 8:38 left in the opening quarter. Walker Smith's PAT added to the lead.
The teams swapped the ball bakc and forth for the next 15 minutes of playing time. Midway the second quarter the Bulldogs took over at their 28 and put together what would be an 18 play drive. The Bulldog quarterback, who rushed for 68 yards on 32 carries in the game, put the Devil Defense against the goal-line with several good runs that gave the Dogs a 1st-&-goal at the 6. The Devil D tightened and forced two incomplete passes and stopped a run for no gain. A 23-yard field goal attempt failed with 18 seconds left in the half, preserving the 7-0 Lincoln County lead.
Big Red took the second half kickoff and started from its 41. The first play went backwards for 9 yards before Tavious McGahee rushed for 4 to setup 3rd-&-15 at the LC 36. Franklin Sherman then found Scott deep for 39 yards and a first down at the Trion 25. Craig Jones gained 12 and Daniel 11 for a 1st-&-goal at the 3. Sherman kept the pigskin for a 1-yard gain. Jones then scored from the two. Smith's kick with 7:44 left in the third quarter provided the Devils with a 14-0 lead.
Trion again put together a lengthy drive, but was stopped on downs at the LC 18. The visitors put together one final scorring effort late in the fourth, marching from midfield to the LC 7 before the Devil Defense caught the quarterback for a sack on 4th down to preserve the shutout.
The win makes 2009 the 7th straight year that Lincoln County has won at least 10 games. This is the 13th consecutive season where our Devils have made it to the second round of the playoffs. Only twice in 36 years have our Devils not played at least two playoff games.
This victory is the 109th playoff win during The Campbell Years. Since the GHSA was formed in the 1940s, the Red Devils have won more playoff games than any other school with 116. Valdosta is second with 113 (and lost in the first round this year). Ninety playoff games have been held at Buddy Bufford Field, making it the school site hosting the most playoff games. Our Devils are 79-11 at home since the first playoff game and win on November 18, 1960: a 33-14 victory over unbeaten GMC in the Class C semi-finals.