GLASGOW — Heading into kickoff for week three of Kentucky high school football, Class 6A Barren County found itself in search of its second win of the young season.
In finding it, they would have to overcome some recent struggles. This would be the best start to a season since 2015 when the Trojans started 2-0 (a year they finished 4-7). Week one was the good with a 48-6 dominating road win at Metcalfe County. Week two was bad when the home opener didn’t go quite as planned and resulted in a 37-7 loss to Woodford County.
Early season jitters are gone and the Trojans probably are somewhere in the middle of those two results, and that’s not a bad thing. Coach Arnett knows that the key for his team to have success is going to rely on establishing the running game and taking care of the football. If they can do those things, they will see much more of the week 1 than what they saw in the following contest.
On Friday, they did just that in a 26-14 win over Class 3A Adair County. The game started with the Trojans pulling a trick play out of their hat by running a hook-and-ladder on the first play from scrimmage.
It was effective, too.
Quarterback Jameson Buie connected on a short pass into the flat, and then the ball was pitched back to Gavin Withrow for a huge gain that instantly had Barren County in the red zone. Three plays later, Buie called his own number and punched it in the end zone for an early 7-0 lead after the extra point.
The Trojan defense matched the effort of the offense early on forcing Adair to go three and out. The short kick resulted in Barren County taking over in enemy territory where it would capitalize once again.
After being pushed to third down and forced to take a time out Buie converted a couple of first downs and the drive was finished off with another touchdown on the ground, this time by senior running back Dayvion Holloway. The point after failed and Barren County led 13-0.
The defense did its part again as it did so well early in this one. It was nothing flashy but it was good enough to get the job done in the first quarter.
Late in the first quarter, Adair County was able to muster up its first first down of the night, but three plays later the Indians were forced to punt once again. Another short kick aided the efforts for the Trojan offense as it once again took over in plus territory. And again it was able to capitalize with its third rushing score of the opening quarter. This time it was Tyler Bush getting in the end zone and it looked like the route was on as they took a 20-0 lead into the second quarter.
It was a battle after that. Adair scored moments later into the second quarter and went for two to trim the lead to 20-8. Shortly after that, they got the ball back with a chance to knock an even bigger dent into the lead. But the drive was thwarted with a Landon Neal interception.
It went back and forth with each team trading three and outs. Adair appeared to be headed for a huge touchdown run, but Bush ran down the Adair County back and forced a fumble, which he also recovered. On the ensuing possession, the Indians blocked a punt after a three and out and scored three plays later. A game that appeared to be headed for a running clock became a game in which Barren County coach Jackson Arnett would see how his team would handle adversity now only leading 20-14.
“When the game got close our guys battled through adversity and came out with a win,” he said.
“If we had tackled a little better then maybe they don’t score. We have to clean that up before next week if we want to win going forward."
It stayed that way for a while as both teams traded three and outs until late in the fourth quarter when Holloway added his second score of the night and the nail in the coffin to seal the 26-14 win for the Trojans who move to 2-1 on the young season and head to Monroe County next week in a big rivalry game.