September 13, 2001

Dominating Passing Game Leads Tigers Past North Shelby In Conference Victory

After a slow start the Scotland County offense may have set off the air raid sirens in North Shelby as the Tigers passing game racked up more than 200 yards in the first half en route to a 38-14 victory over the Raiders.

The Raiders actually took advantage of the Tigers pass game as Justin Beech picked off an SCR-I pass and returned it 70-yards for the first score of the game. The point after try was good, giving North Shelby a 7-0 lead.

Scotland County came right back on the next possession. Aaron Dale gave the team excellent field position with a kick return to the 40-yard line. The sophomore also was filling in as the starting tailback for injured Jarrod Talbert. After a pair of first down runs by Dale, the Tigers went back to the air. Aarron Holt connected with Curtis Cochran on a long pass play to put the ball in scoring position. Cochran made a diving catch on the 31-yard completion.

Dale capped the drive on the next play as he bolted around the left end and dove into the end zone for a 27-yard touchdown. The PAT was no good leaving SCR-I trailing 7-6 with 6:11 left in the first quarter.

SCR-I got the ball right back less than a minute later. Brian Harvey forced a North Shelby fumble that was recovered by Robbie Miller.

They wasted no time adding to the score as Holt connected with Cochran on the next play for a 33-yard touchdown pass. The two-point attempt failed. SCR-I led 12-7 at the 5:50 mark.

North Shelby took it's time evening the score. The Raiders mounted a long drive that carried over into the second quarter. Beech capped off the drive with 10:43 in the second period when he scored on a four-yard touchdown run. The PAT was good, giving the Raiders a 14-12 lead.

The two teams traded punts on the next two possessions. Brooks Small made a key defensive play to break up a pass and stall the North Shelby drive.

With just over six minutes left in the first half the Tigers went back to the passing game. Holt orchestrated a lengthy drive hitting a variety of receivers. He found Kirk Stott for a first down to move the chains. After Joel Myers picked up another first down on a draw play, Holt hit Tim Buford across the middle to move the chains again.

The big play came from Stott who made an amazing over the shoulder catch down the sideline to pick up 32 yards. That set up the next play as Holt hit Curtis Cochran for a 17-yard touchdown pass. The two-point conversion failed leaving SCR-I ahead 18-14 with 3:51 left in the first half.

The turning point came in the final minutes. The SCR-I defense came up big and stopped the Raiders, forcing a punt with 1:47 left in the half.

The Tigers took over at midfield and struck quickly. On the first play, SCR-I sent out three receivers to the right side. That set up a mismatch as the inside receiver, Stott was matched up against a linebacker with no safety help. The formation worked perfectly as Holt threaded the needle past the defender and hit Stott in full stride as he raced 47-yards to the end zone for the touchdown. Tim Robinson made the extra point kick to make the score 25-14 with a minute and a half to play.

Scotland County put the game away in the first series of the second half. The big play came courtesy of Dale. Holt lofted a pass down field to the tailback. The defender was in position and batted the ball into the air but Dale maintained his concentration, plucked the ball out of the air and picked up 32 yards on the completion.

The chains moved again on a more conventional pass play as Holt hit Cochran on the slant pattern for 11 yards. That set up Dale who once again put up a 27-yard scamper to the end zone, this time at the other end of the field as he scored for the second time from that distance.

Robinson made his second straight PAT kick to give the Tigers a 32-14 lead with 9:51 left in the third period.

North Shelby looked poised to cut into the lead with a long drive but Cochran ran down a North Shelby receiver on his way to a touchdown and forced a fumble. The loose ball went out of bounds in the end zone, turning the ball over to the Tigers on the touchback.

The Tigers ran out much of the clock in the third period as they ground out the clock with the rushing game. Myers capped the drive with a one-yard touchdown run. The PAT was no good but the Tigers led 38-14 with 5:38 remaining in the game.

The Tigers junior varsity finished out the contest as Robinson and Jared Shelley looked good carrying the ball.

The Tigers defense looked solid for a second straight game, allowing just one offensive touchdown for the Raiders. Dale led the attack with 12 tackles. Myers had nine stops and Jeff McBee finished with eight tackles.

They limited North Shelby to 78 yards rushing and 23 yards passing for 101 yards of total offense.

Dale also had a solid performance on the offensive side. He rushed for a career high 114 yards and two touchdowns on 17 carries. Myers also contributed with nearly 40 yards and a touchdown on a dozen carries.

Holt had his best game as an SCR-I quarterback. He completed 13 of 18 passes for 266 yards and three touchdowns.

Cochran was his favorite target as he hit the junior seven times for 115 yards and two scores. Stott had four receptions but racked up 104 yards and a score. Dale and Buford each caught one pass.

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