Senior halfback Cody Thompson rushed for four touchdowns and returned a kickoff for another score as the LaRue County Hawks closed the regular season Friday night by rallying for a 40-31 road win against the Washington County Commanders on senior night at Bennett R. Lewis Field. Thompson finished with 274 rushing yards on 14 carries for his seventh consecutive game with at least 100 rushing yards and fourth straight game with at least two touchdowns. He scored on a 2-yard run with 7:35 left in the second quarter, a 63-yard run 57 seconds into the second half, a 67-yard run with 3:25 left in the third quarter, a 91-yard kickoff return with 10:55 left in the fourth quarter and a 79-yard run with 6:28 left in the game.
Senior fullback Drew Newberry added 111 rushing yards on 10 carries, the final tote going for a 29-yard touchdown run as he dragged several Commanders across the field. The score, combined with the extra point from junior kicker Alex Cook, gave the Hawks a two-possession lead with 1:17 left.
Washington County (5-5) lost despite leading 12-0 with less than 9 minutes to play in the first half and 12-7 with 11:04 remaining in the third quarter. However, the Hawks never trailed after Thompson’s 63-yard score.
The teams had combined for five touchdowns in the first 36 minutes before exploding for six in the final 12.
The Commanders gained 573 yards – a LaRue County single-game worst this season – but needed a whopping 89 plays. The Hawks ran 35 plays for 387 yards – all on the ground. Washington County ran 41 plays in the first half to LaRue County’s nine in three possessions – two three-and-out punts and a three-play, 60-yard scoring drive capped off by Thompson’s 2-yard run.
Washington County senior quarterback Trae Abell was 30-of-49 passing for four touchdowns and 417 yards to surpass the 2,000-yard mark for the season. He was intercepted once by LaRue County junior Caleb Canter, but the Hawks turned the ball back over two plays later with a fumble.
Abell’s 30 completions helped him land a spot in the KHSAA record book for single-game completions. Senior Connor Riney caught 12 passes for 178 yards and one touchdown, while senior Kyle Curtsinger caught nine passes for 123 yards and two touchdowns. Senior Marcus Reardon had three receptions for 68 yards and one touchdown and carried the ball nine times for 50 yards and another score.
LaRue County has taken 10 of the teams’ last 11 meetings. The Commanders’ lone win in the stretch came in 2007.
UP NEXT: LaRue County (6-4) hosts Wayne County (8-2) at 7:30 p.m. Friday in the first round of the Class 3-A state playoffs.