Dunn needs 129 yards to be Pioneers' all-time top rusher

October 15, 2003|MIKE MARSEE

Mark Dunn runs over 225 yard lines on an average Friday night, but he'll likely cross one Friday at Owen County that will be far more significant than most.

Dunn needs 129 yards to become the all-time leading rusher at Harrodsburg and surpass the school record that has stood for 18 years.

Harrodsburg coach Terry Yeast said Dunn hasn't said much about the milestone, but Yeast said he believes it means a great deal to the senior running back.

"He's a very humble kid. I know deep down he's got to really want this bad, but he doesn't talk much about it," Yeast said.


Dunn's achievement, which will place him among the top 20 rushers in state history, is even more noteworthy given that he missed almost all of last season due to injuries.

"The young man has done in three years what a lot of people can't say they have done, and he's worked hard for it," Yeast said. "I think that's what made him hungry, getting ready for this season."

Dunn has chewed up opposing defenses for 1,573 yards and 22 touchdowns this season, and his career total is 4,970 yards.

Donald Smith, Dunn's coach in his freshman season and now the coach at Kentucky State University, set the school record with 5,098 yards from 1982-85, the 19th-highest total in the state record book.

"I think he's looking forward to being there, and being a true supporter of Harrodsburg, he's looking forward to seeing it," Yeast said of Smith, his cousin.

Yeast said he wants to make sure the entire Harrodsburg team enjoys Dunn's moment.

"I told the team, 'You guys have an opportunity to be part of something special,'" he said. "I played with Donald, and I knew what it meant for me, not just as a cousin but as a player, to be a part of what Donald did."

Keith Dunn, Mark's older brother, came up less than 100 yards short of Smith's mark.

Yeast said he hopes Harrodsburg (6-1) can jump on Owen (2-5) the way it jumped on Trimble County last week, when the Pioneers scored on their first three possessions en route to a 50-0 win.

"We don't want them to have an opportunity to think they can beat us," Yeast said. "I think they are certainly going to try to run the ball down our throats. They are certainly wanting to try to control the football, and not letting them do that is probably going to be the key to us being successful."

Casey County (1-6) at Wayne County (2-5)

A sense of urgency has set in at Casey, where the Rebels are running out of chances to make the Class AA playoffs.

Casey has three games remaining, but only two are district games, and the Rebels must win one of them to earn a playoff berth. Coach Andy Stephens said he'd like it to be this one.

"We feel like we've got to win it," Stephens said. "We've gotten to the point where we think everyone we play is a must-win. We're 1-6, and we've got to have some things happen good for us."

Running back-linebacker Rex Delk, quarterback-receiver Blake McGinnis and lineman Andrew Allen all have played at far less than 100 percent due to injuries this season, but Stephens said all of them are getting stronger.

"We're getting Blake and Rex back - they're the best they've been in a while - and Andrew is feeling a lot better," the Casey coach said.

"I feel good about the way Rex and Blake both have played the last two weeks. They played as hard as they could, and everybody else is going to play hard around them."

The Rebels still won't be at full strength, though. Offensive lineman Luke Weddle will be away on an out-of-state hunting trip for the second straight year, and this year he is taking defensive tackle Kyle Allen with him.

Casey comes off a 48-14 loss to Corbin in which the Rebels ran for nearly 400 yards but reached the end zone only twice; Wayne never got there in a 9-0 loss at Garrard County.

Wayne is a strong team with a twist: The Cardinals aren't relying on power football as much as in the past, and they passed nearly 20 times last week.

"Size-wise, they're not as big as a normal Wayne County team, but it's a strong team, and they play really physical," Stephens said.

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