By Les Dixon / Sports Editor
CLAY COUNTY — Knox Central coach Scottie Russell preached the importance of his team’s first district game of the season the entire week and the Panther players listened.
Knox Central improved to a perfect 7-0 on the season and captured an important road district game by defeating Clay County, 42-6.
The Panthers flexed their muscles early against the Tigers, but could only build a 14-0 lead. Clay County cut its deficit to 14-6 at the end of the first half before Knox Central blew the game open.
The Panthers scored 28 unanswered points during the game’s final two quarters and pulled out the easy 36-point win.
“This was a big win for us,” Russell said. “We knew if we wanted to accomplish our goals, we needed to win this game and we did. But I want to say, we’ve got a lot of room for improvement.
“We didn’t play well the first two quarters and it showed,” he added. “To win this district, you better play four quarters or you’re going to be in trouble. You’ve got to win every district game this year or you’re not going to win this district.”
Knox Central was once again spearheaded by the backfield duo of Jeffrey Canady and Jonathan Gist. Canady led the way with 149 rushing yards and two touchdowns while Gist had 124 rushing yards and three rushing touchdowns.
“They both played well once again for us,” Russell said. “I didn’t know if Jeffrey was going to be able to play in the second half because of him being sick, but he managed to play and did a good job. Jonathan also ran the ball well for us, too.”
Quarterback Devan Evans completed five of seven pass attempts for 40 yards and added 37 yards on the ground while Matthew Barger had 35 yards receiving and freshman Jacob Mills added a 15-yard touchdown reception.
“Like I said, this was a good win, we needed it, but we have to put four quarters together,” Russell said. “We just took over in the second half.”
By Les Dixon / Sports Editor
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