Defense helps lead Lee County past Northside

Northside’s defense was great. Lee County’s was better.

Evidence for both – the Trojans winning 14-0 and earning the GHSA Class AAAAAA title for the second-straight year. The Eagles had no first downs and only three yards rushing in the first quarter. It also had no passing yards and punted twice.

The second was not much better. Lee County held it to 22 yards rushing, none passing – of course Northside hadn’t yet to even attempt a pass – and two first downs. It had 25 yards of total offense at that point.

The Eagles’ third: eight rushing, six passing, one first down.

For the Eagles, they held the high-powered, 43-point averaging Trojans to four first downs in the first quarter, 31 rushing yards and 86 receiving yards. It limited them to one first down in the second quarter, four rushing and 23 passing yards.

Lee County’s totals for the third: 31 rushing, 19 passing and three first downs. The fourth was better for both – most probably because the defenses finally began to tire.

Of course the glaring difference was on the scoreboard. The Trojans were able to get a four-yard rushing touchdown from Shaun Kimbrough that completed an eight-play drive that only needed to go 38 yards due to a good return. It came on Lee County’s fourth possession of the game and finished with just 32 seconds left in the first.

They got their second touchdown with 11:55 left in the game. It was on a Kimbrough rush of two yards and finished off a seven-play, 37-yard drive. Austin Beaver, who missed a 46-yard attempt early in the third, made both of the points after.

The Eagles’ biggest opportunities came late in the game. On their next to last possession of the game, they took the ball at their own 5, ran 16 plays before finally being stopped on the 1. After getting the ball back, they moved it to the 15 before Jadin Daniels, Northside’s leading rusher with 75 yards on 23 carries – he was also 9-19 for 111 yards – threw a pass out of the back of the endzone on a fourth down play.

Lee County took over and ran out the rest of the clock.