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With their 33-6 victory over District 3 rival, the Elizabethtown Panthers (1-7), the LaRue County Hawks (4-4) have locked up a home game in the 2012 playoffs.
“It’s always a good thing to beat your rivals and doing it on homecoming night doesn’t hurt either,” Head Coach Josh Jaggers said of the complete victory Friday night.
Offensively the Hawks commitment to the running game resulted in more than 400 total rushing yards and five touchdowns.
One hundred nineteen of those yards and three of the touchdowns came from senior Caleb Canter who took the Hawks’ first offensive hand-off 75 yards for a touchdown.
Senior Matthew Hornback amassed 125 rushing yards and a score and senior Kelton Ford contributed 100 yards along with a touchdown.
The three-headed, senior, offensive rushing attack was relentless for the Hawks who took a 27–0 lead through the first three quarters of play.
The Hawks’ defense was nearly as dominate as their running backs, controlling the field position mini-game for much of the night.
Setting the tone early, LaRue’s defense stopped a fourth down conversion attempt that gave their offense a short field and easy touchdown run for Hornback.
The defense also held the Panthers scoreless until early in the fourth quarter.
Elizabethtown’s lone touchdown came two minutes into the fourth quarter via a touchdown pass from Josh Williams to Devaughn Miller.
With momentum on their side the Panthers were able to recover the ensuing on-side kick.
But that momentum was short lived as the Hawks’ defense stepped up once again in a big way.
“Baseball brings in closing pitchers to ice the game away and that’s what our defense did,” said Jaggers. “(Junior Dalton) Lawson was our closer tonight.”
Elizabethtown’s first offense play after the on-side kick resulted in an interception by Lawson that all but ended the Panthers hopes of a dramatic comeback.
The Hawks closed the game just as they started with touchdown run, this time by Ford, from 27 yards out.
LaRue County’s victory keeps them undefeated in district play and guarantees at least one home game in this year’s playoffs.
Next the Hawks travel to Louisville and play Central High School at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 19.