The Oak Ridge Wildcats’ 41-28 win over Dobyns-Bennett on Friday featured acrobatic catches by senior wide receiver Tee Higgins, long touchdown runs by sophomore running back Jordan Graham, and three fumble recoveries by senior linebacker Kyndall Clark. He forced one and recovered another for a touchdown.
There were also a few firsts: first touchdown catch for junior wide receiver Caleb Martin and first interception of the season for senior linebacker Jacob Gross. And sophomore Kai’Reese Pendergrass, who returned a kickoff 98 yards for a touchdown at Clinton last week, stopped a Dobyns-Bennett drive on Blankenship Field on Friday with an interception in the end zone in the third quarter.
The Indians (1-1, 0-0 Region 1-6A) dominated in total yards in the non-region game: 579 to 391. They also had 21 first downs to Oak Ridge’s nine.
But Dobyns-Bennett lost four fumbles and gave up two interceptions, and penalties (11 for 101 yards) also hurt the Indians. The Wildcats (2-0, 1-0 Region 3-Class 5A) had no turnovers.
Much of the buzz after the game focused on two highlight-reel catches by Higgins, who was double-teamed on both. [Read more…]
Note: This story was last updated at 12 p.m. Aug. 29
KINGSPORT—A tipped pass intercepted by the Oak Ridge defense at their own 11-yard line with less than three minutes to play saved a 17-14 win for the Wildcats at Dobyns-Bennett on Friday.
Before the tipped pass and interception, the Indians had blocked a Wildcats punt at the Oak Ridge 33 and driven to the Oak Ridge 10. The Wildcats were ahead by three, but Dobyns-Bennett had a chance to tie the game or even take the lead.
But with 2:39 to play, Wildcats senior defensive end Alex Alcorn blocked a pass by Indians quarterback Cole Maupin, and senior linebacker Adam Manookian intercepted it, shifting the momentum from Dobyns-Bennett back to Oak Ridge.
After the interception, two big runs by senior quarterback Jordan Dunbar helped the Wildcats (2-0) get the football into Dobyns-Bennett territory, where Oak Ridge was able to let time run out at the end of the fourth quarter.
“It was definitely a nail-biter,” Manookian said. “They were so close to the end zone.” [Read more…]