LYNCHBURG, Tenn. — The Moore County High School Raiders collected their second win of the season with a 42-18 victory over Richland in Lynchburg Friday.
Junior tailback/quarterback Nate Love ran for 133 yards and two touchdowns and senior running back Isaac Holt added 103 yards and two scores as the Moore County ground game enjoyed arguably its best night of the season.
Following annual Senior Night festivities — which honor the senior members of the football team, cheerleaders and band — Moore County kicked off to start the game. Richland went three and out and the Raiders (2-7 overall 2-5 Reg. 4-A), took over on the Moore County 34.
Following two runs by Holt that moved the ball to the Richland 44, Love broke free and rambled 44 yards for a touchdown. Junior Coy Cashion booted the first of six extra points to put Moore County up 7-0 with 8:40 left in the first stanza.
Richland (1-8, 0-7) came right back and drove down to the Moore County 3-yard line.
A holding penalty, the first of several that plagued Richland in the game, moved the ball back and the Raiders appeared to have held when a pass interference call in the end zone kept the drive alive.
The penalty gave Richland the ball at the 3 once again, where Caleb Briggs bulled in with 5:26 showing on the clock. A two-point try failed and Moore County’s Raiders led the Richland Raiders 7-6.
Following an exchange of punts, Moore County got back on the scoreboard when quarterback Matthew Schuller connected with Austin Waters on a 30-yard scoring strike. Cashion’s kick made it 14-6 with just over five and half minutes left in the half.
Two minutes later Briggs set sail on another touchdown run, this one for 53 yards. But Waters intercepted the Richland pass on the two point try.
Cashion fumbled the ensuing kickoff, but after Moore County held, he made up for his miscue with a 36-yard touchdown run; he then kicked the extra point to put Moore County up 21-12 with just 36 ticks left on the clock in the first half.
The host Raiders got the ball at their 40 to begin the second half, but a fumbled pitchout between Schuller and Love turned it over to Richland.
The boys from Lynnville drove to the Moore County 24. Their drive stalled there, however and MCHS took over on downs at that point.
With 1:09 left in the third quarter, Holt raced the final 10 yards for six points; Cashion’s kick made it 28-12.
Richland began the fourth quarter at its own 42. From there, the visitors drove down to the Raiders 8-yard line where Latrell Daily scored. The third two-point try was no good and Richland trailed the Raiders 28-18 with 9:33 still left to play.
On the next drive, Love took off on a 61-yard touchdown run that seemed to deflate the Raiders of Richland with 8:40 remaining.
Trailing 35-18, emotions seemed to get the better of the Richland players and several unsportsmanlike conduct calls allowed Moore County to kick off from the Richland 30.
A Raider squib kick was mishandled by Richland and Moore County got the ball back at the 20. Then another unsportsmanlike call moved it to the Richland 10.
An apparent touchdown pass was called back due to holding and the Raiders were unable to score.
On its next possession, Richland’s beleaguered offense only managed about six yards in four tries and Moore County took over at the Richland 23.
Holt got his second rushing touchdown of the game with a 4-yard blast into the end zone with 2:21 remaining.
—Notes: Led by Love, Holt and Cashion, Moore County piled up 341 yards rushing. The Raiders added 30 more through the air. Love led the Raiders ground game with 133 yards and two TDs on seven carries. Holt had 103 yards and two scores on 17 touches, while Cashion picked up 100 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries. … Schuller was 1-of-2 through the air with the lone reception being the 30-yard touchdown pass to Waters. … Richland had a total of 266 yards, including 147 on the ground. Quarterback Braxton Woodard was 4-of-9 for 119 yards through the air, including a touchdown and an interception. … Moore County travels to Mt. Pleasant this Friday night to face the Tigers in the season finale for both teams. Last week’s win puts the Raiders 2-5 in conference play and 2-7 overall with a chance to end the 2016 season on a winning note at Mt. Pleasant. Mt. Pleasant (1-8, 1-6) was manhandled 52-30 by Summertown last week. The Tigers’ lone win came against Richland on Oct. 14. … MCHS last had back-to-back wins on Oct. 23 and Oct. 30 of 2015 when the Raiders topped Richland and Mt. Pleasant. … Columbia Academy sits atop the region standings with an unblemished 7-0 mark. Fayetteville (7-2, 6-1) is second and Summertown (8-2, 6-2) is third. Those three teams have a lock on the postseason. Cornersville and Huntland are scrapping for the final playoff berth. Both are 4-3, although Cornersville has an edge thanks to a 40-16 win over the Hornets. Huntland also has the disadvantage of facing league leader CA in the season finale, while Cornersville plays at Richland. … A win by Moore County, combined with a loss by Grace Christian-Franklin (2-6, 2-5) would put MCHS sixth in the final standings in head coach Jason Dobbs’ first season in Lynchburg. … Friday’s kickoff is set for 7 p.m.
—PHIL GATTO, MCN Contributor
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