For the first time in their series history with the Russell Red Devils, the Greenup County Musketeers have defeated the Red Devils in back to back seasons following their victory Saturday night in Lloyd, 41-21. Head coach Scott Grizzle was proud of his team’s effort in their victory Saturday night. “It’s really big for our guys” said Grizzle, “Players win games, coaches lose games, there’s no doubt about that. We had some big time players step up tonight, that was great to see. It means a lot to our community and our school.”
The game started off on a slow start by the Musketeers standards, as Greenup was not able to put their first points on the board until nearly halfway through the second quarter. Prior to the Musketeers first squaring chance, Russell running back Malaki Anderson punched in the game’s first points on a one yard touchdown carry halfway through the first quarter.
Once the flood gates opened for Greenup, it was all Russell could do to attempt to stop the bleeding coming from the high powered Musketeer offense. Senior running back Dalton Halstead scored Greenup’s first touchdown on a one yard touchdown rush to tie the game at 7-7.
Halstead wouldn’t remain quiet for long, however. The senior running back had a career day in Greenup’s biggest rivalry game, scoring his second one yard rushing touchdown of the game just three minutes following his first to push his team ahead 14-7 heading into the half.
Junior quarterback Eli Sammons delivered a perfect pass into the arms of senior wide receiver Patrick Kelly early in the third quarter. Kelly then proceeded to sprint into the end zone to complete the 54 yard touchdown pass and extend the Musketeer lead to 21-7.
Kelly, just as Halstead, would not prolong his ability to leave his mark on the game. Sammons found Kelly open once again just three minutes later for a 64 yard touchdown pass. After his second long reception of the game, Kelly became the Musketeers all time leader in receiving yardage just two games into his senior season. Kelly would finish the game with four receptions, 162 yards and two touchdowns for the Musketeers.
Before the end of the third quarter, junior wide receiver and punter Austin Evans set back to punt the ball for the Musketeers before reading the Russell defense and deciding to rush for a first down. However, the Evans fake punt wouldn’t result in just a first down. Evans found an opening and cut across field for a 56 yard touchdown rush extending the Greenup lead to 34-14 in the final two minutes of the third.
According to Grizzle, the fake punt is an option left entirely to Evans discretion as to when it is appropriate to use. “I can’t take any credit for that” said Grizzle, “Our philosophy is we snap it to one of our best athletes in Austin Evans. Austin is a smart player and a great player, and we give him the green light. If you can get the first down, go. It’s something we go over in practice and give the young man credit for making a great play.”
Before the end of the game, Halstead decided he was not finished in his final game versus Greenup’s biggest rival. Halstead broke a 66 yard rushing touchdown to put the game away for Greenup in the final few minutes of the fourth quarter, extending their lead to 41-14. Halstead finished Saturday night’s affair with 177 yards on 24 carries and three rushing touchdowns.
Grizzle had great things to say about his two senior playmakers following his team’s 41-21 victory. “Two seniors stepping up in a big time game” said Grizzle, “We told them before the game, ‘Seniors play like seniors’ and they did that tonight. Two great players, and those guys bring it every night.”
The Musketeers will host the Fleming County Panthers next Friday night with kickoff at 7:30 p.m. in Lloyd.
Reach Jacob Smith at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter @JacobSmithPDT