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Fans might have thought they were witnessing a running clinic when the Trimble County Raiders and Carroll County Panthers met Friday night for Trimble County football homecoming. It was a bad night for the Raider fans as the border rival Panthers walked off the field with a 45-26 win at the end of the fourth quarter.
Throughout the game, the Raiders had trouble containing sophomore Zach Wise, who had 29 carries for 242 yards and four touchdowns. The individual effort by Wise made a tough situation worse for the Raiders.
It was a bad start for the home team when Trimble received the kickoff and fumbled the ball away on the first play of the game. After a Panther player fell on the ball to take possession, Carroll County couldn’t make it across the goal line and settled for three for the early lead.
Just a few drives later, the Raiders were again on the defensive but managed to shut down the Panther offense with a Brody Newby interception. The turnover set up a scoring drive that took Larry Sullivan, Jr. into the end zone and gave the Raiders a 6-3 lead, which held following a failed two-point conversion.
The Panthers followed with a drive that ended with Wise running the ball in for six and a successful point after to give Carroll County the lead 10-6. But with fire in their veins, the Raiders clawed back to grab the lead once again 12-10 heading into the second quarter.
The second quarter was all about Carroll County, as the visitors shut the home team down and sent them to the locker room with a halftime score 24-12.
The final two quarters were again dominated by the Panthers.
In the beginning of the third, the Raiders came out hot. After a couple of defensive stops, the team plunged into a tough two-yard run to cut the lead down to 6.
The score was never closer as Carroll County grabbed the ball to put 21 unanswered points on the board, posting a 45-18 lead. With less than a minute to go, Trimble scored their final touchdown of the night, but it made little difference as the game was already won by Carroll.
Even with senior quarterback Sullivan’s 22 carries, 237 yards and four touchdowns, which nearly matched Carroll’s Wise, Raider mistakes led to a disappointing outcome for the 1-4 Trimble County.
Although the Raider athletes are not in class this week as the district is closed for fall break, the players are practicing hard in preparation for Friday’s game against Frankfort. The Raiders might be looking to avenge last year’s playoff loss when the central Kentucky team ended Trimble’s season.