It was the fiftieth time the Lumpkin County Indians and the White County Warriors have met up on the gridiron. In what has developed over time as a big rivalry game for the two schools, the Warriors jumped ahead with an early lead and ultimately won 49-6.
The Indians were the first to receive, and a fumble on second down turned possession over to the Warriors on the Indians 41 yard line. In a matter of three plays the Warriors had carried for a first down and a touchdown to take an early lead 7-0.
The Indians offense couldn’t get anything past the Warriors defense during their next possession and were forced to punt. The Warriors took over at their 44 yard line, and a combination of passing and rushing game scored the Warriors their second touchdown of the night. The Warriors led 14-0 with plenty of playing time still in the first quarter.
Lumpkin County again struggled to move the ball past the Warriors defense. With no gain of yardage the Indians were again forced to punt from their 18 yard line. White County took over and carried in for another touchdown to extend their lead 21-0.
The Indians took over at their 20 yard line, and this time were able to gain some yardage with a completed pass from quarterback Tucker Kirk to Roy Bennett. Kirk carried for a gain of 5 yards on second down, followed by a carry by Drew Allison for the Indians first down. Kirk threw a pass to Allison for another first down, and BoJack Dowdy carried the ball for a gain of one yard. Unfortunately the Indians couldn’t make it any further into Warrior territory, and punted on fourth down from the Warriors 49 yard line.
The Warriors ended the first quarter on a high note- a huge 45 yard pass from quarterback J.Ben Haynes. The Warriors would ultimately score again on that drive and put another seven points on the board for a 28-0 lead.
Lumpkin County took over on their 35 yard line and drove for a few yards before being forced to punt again on fourth down. The Indians defense came to life to force the Warriors back for a loss of 5 yards to prevent another touchdown, and the Warriors kicked a field goal for a 31-0 lead.
Although neither team put anymore points on the board before halftime, Lumpkin County had several highlights for their offense. A big pass from Kirk to Aaron Hopkins resulted in a gain of 16 yards and a first down during the Indians next possession, and just before halftime Dowdy carried for a gain of 19 yards.
Coming out of halftime the Warriors scored again for their fifth touchdown of the night and a lead of 38-0. Lumpkin County took over at their 23 yard line, but a snap that was recovered in the endzone resulted in a safety. The Warriors were stopped in by the Indians in four plays, and Lumpkin County took over at their 35 yard line.
Although the Indians couldn’t get much movement in their next possession, a fumble by the Warriors during their next possession was recovered by Bennett. Unfortunately for the Indians, the Warriors regained possession after a snap was over the head of Kirk.
The Indians defense again fought to push back the Warriors offense from another touchdown. A great play by the Indians Jason Chamblee helped prevent the Warriors from scoring from their position at the two yard line. The Warriors went for a field goal on fourth down, and got it to make the score 43-0.
The Indians first and only touchdown of the night came during their next possession. Kirk found Brian Cunane along the sideline for an incredible pass and gain of 12 yards. After Allison carried for a gain of four yards, Kirk completed a 16 yard pass to Cunane for the Indians touchdown. The score was still 43-6, but the Indians had a reason to celebrate as the third quarter came to a close.
The Warriors scored their final touchdown of the night during their next possession, but the extra point attempt was blocked by the Indians J.T. Thomas. The Warriors led 49-6 early in the fourth quarter, and neither team scored the remainder of the game.
The Indians are 0-2 on the season, but with plenty of football left to play. They will travel to Jackson County to take on the Black Panthers next Friday night. The Warriors are 1-0 as this game was their season opener. They will travel to face Habersham Central next Friday.
The Lumpkin County Indians baseball team closed their summer league season with an 8-5 win over White County at home yesterday.
This game was a bounce-back for the Indians, who lost 6-0 the day before in a home game against the Chestatee War Eagles.
Lumpkin County broke out with a four run lead in the bottom of the first. A single by Andrew Segars and Caleb Childs each along with a triple by Harris Taylor assured the Indians a comfortable lead early on.
Dalton Caldwell started on the hill for the Indians, and closed out two innings before the Warriors got two runs on the board in the top of the third.
Those two runs were from a deep drive out to center field by Warrior Kyler Mayo, earning him two RBIs and the first runs of the day for White County.
Lumpkin got the bases loaded in the top of the fifth, thanks to another single by Segars and a double by Nick Turner. From there it was a matter of getting runners across the plate, and singles from Harris Taylor and Caleb Childs brought the score up to 8-2.
White County brought in three more runs in the top of the sixth, but in the end the Indians triumphed to finish out the summer.
“Today was a big confidence builder for these guys,” said Head Coach Jonathan Gastley. “We gotta just keep working and doing the little things that we’re doing.”
The White County Warriors had an impressive 2017 football season. Coming off an abismal 1-9 season in 2016, the Warriors came out swinging and scored some big wins early in 2017; defeating Franklin (33-0), Lumpkin (66-14) and Habersham Central (24-21) before dropping a tough loss to Rabun County (49-26).
The Warriors came back the following week and knocked down North Hall (28-18), who’s only other loss to a AAAA power came in the final seconds against Pickens County (42-35) where the Trojans marched down the field and came up just short as time expired.
In 2018, the Warriors will once again have an exciting schedule to kick off the season, and there’s no doubt they’ll be looking to duplicate and even improve upon their 7-4, 2-2 season from last year.
With games at Lumpkin County and then home against Habersham Central, the Warriors kick the season off much like they did in 2017. However, put a big red circle around the Sept 7 game at Pickens County, where PHS head coach Chris Parker is likely reloading rather than rebuilding this season. The game pits two quality AAAA programs against each other in non-region play, with White representing Region 7-AAAA and Pickens representing Region 6-AAAA. Both teams were eliminated early in post-season play last year, but both teams proved to be fearsome opponents on the gridiron regardless of home/away.
After the Pickens game, the Warriors schedule doesn’t let up.
The Warriors enjoyed a 10-pt victory over North Hall last season, but the Trojans played much better football as the season continued, and was the #TeamFYNSports Most Improved Team in Region 7-AAA last season. The Warriors will look to defeat the Trojans (9/14), before taking the drive over to Marist for their first game in region play. Marist, as the whole world is aware, is the defending region champion in Region 6. What’s interesting about Marist is although they won their region, defeating rival Blessed Trinity 25-24 early in the season. Two months later, the two teams met again in the State Championship and Blessed Trinity defeated the War Eagles 16-7. Undoubtedly, Marist will look to return to the final in 2018, but they will have to go through White County first.
Perhaps the best part of the Warriors’ schedule this year is the break between facing Marist (9/21) and Blessed Trinity (11/2), although the Warriors will need to defeat Flowery Branch, West Hall, Denmark and Chestatee during the interim.
How will the 2018 season fare for the Warriors of White County? It’s too early to tell. Rest assured the team will be preparing accordingly and TeamFYNSports looks forward to reporting on the 2018 season from the sidelines this fall.