Five first-half take-aways sealed the fate of the Screaming Devils here last Friday night, as Lincoln County dominated Warren County 60-12.
This Friday at Buddy Bufford Field, the task for our Devils will be much tougher as undefeated Aquinas visits. The Irish are averaging nearly 40 points per game behind the running of Ruben Garnett. Aquinas is ranked #3 in Class A, and is the current favorite to win the Region 7-A crown. Many thought the Irish would not be successful this year with the loss of coach Matt Lezotte and Back of the Year Brendan Douglas, who now plays at Sanford Stadium. But that hasn't happened, and the Irish appear to be stronger in many ways.
Tail-gating will start by 6:00. The Devil Walk will be at 6:30, with fans asked to form a tunnel in the parking lot. Members of the 1963 football team and cheerleaders are asked to meet on the field at 7:00 for recognition of the 50th anniversary of the 1963 Class C state title team. The game will be broadcast live on WJBF 6.2.
The Red Devils improved to 2-0 in Region 7-A and 3-2 on the season. The win was the 38th consecutive over Warren County. The last Screaming Devil win was in 1971.
Most Red Devil starters only played the first half. Mike McIntire led rushers with 94 yards and 3 touchdowns on 14 attempts. For the season, the senior has 758 yards on 91 carries for a per-rush average of 8.3 yards.
Lincoln County took the opening kickoff and marched down the field on 9 plays. McIntire ran for 14 yards before Lakeith Lockhart passed 9 yards to Jamar Norman at midfield. McIntire scored on a 26-yard run with 9:21 left in the opening quarter. James Spratlin's PAT kick was good for a 7-0 lead.
Ben Turner recovered the first of four Warren fumbles to start the next LCRD possession. Lockhart connected with Fred Crite for five yards and Jaelyn Jones for 8 yards. Lockhart then ran in from 11 yards out with 6 minutes left in the first quarter. Spratlin made it 14-0 for the home team.
The Screaming Devils fumbled on the following kickoff with Crite recovering. McIntire ran for 8 before scoring from the 5 with 5 minutes left. The Devils led 21-0 after the first quarter.
After stopping the visitors, the Devils worked on their passing with Lockhart completing two passes (9 yards and 8 yards) to Spratlin. Lockhart scored on a 7-yard run with 11:22 left in the first half. The PAT kick failed, leaving the Devils up 27-0.
But the Red Devils were far from finished in the first half. Jalen Wade recovered another Warren fumble leading to a 5-yard touchdown run by McIntire. The extra point by Spratlin came with 10:39 left before the bands played, and LC up 34-0.
Lockhart proved the benefit of the "tip drill" in practice as he tipped an interception to himself a half dozen times before finally getting control of the pigskin. He then faced a 4th-&-11 when he found Max Ashmore on a 29-yard touchdown pass. The Devils led 41-0 with 8:08 left in the first half.
After stopping the Screaming Devils, the younger Lincoln County players started seeing playing time. Freshman running back Quay Hartfield carried five consecutive times, including gaining 20 yards on 4th-&-11 at the WC 30. The speedster scored from 5 yards out with just under 3 minutes left before the break. Sophomore kicker Ryan O'neill booted the PAT for a 48-0 lead.
Demarion Jones closed out the first half scoring when he returned a fumble 20 yards with 2:45 left. The Devils led 54-0 at the half.
The second half was played under GHSA's mercy rules, with the clock running. Warren County scored on a 4-yard run near the end of the third quarter, and returned an interception 70 yards midway the fourth. Jamar Norman used his blockers well and returned the following kickoff 75 yards for a touchdown with 5:53 left in the game. The final score was 60-12.
Be there early Friday for this big game! Go Red Devils!!