'Super' offensive line key to Boyle's win

November 23, 2003|JILL ERWIN

It was a big night for the Boyle County offense, and plenty of players got their names announced over the public address system. But it was the players in the trenches who deserved the spotlight.

The Rebels' offensive line held Pulaski County at bay Friday night as Boyle rolled to a 63-14 victory over the Maroons for the Class AAA, Region 2 championship.

"I thought they were super," Boyle coach Chuck Smith said. "That was part of our game plan. We had to keep their offense off the field. In order to do that, our offensive line really had to come to play. They were super."

Boyle ran for 359 yards, including over 100 yards each from Quinn Givhan and Brandon Smith. Smith also had plenty of time to throw the ball, completing 16-of-23 passes for 272 yards and four scores. That enabled the Rebels to amass 631 yards of total offense.


"They were awesome," Brandon Smith said. "The offensive line was great. I had all kinds of time to throw the ball and pick them apart. Then we got tired of throwing it and we'd run it and they gave Quinn and me some great holes. It was all them. All those yards were because of them."

"The offensive line was unbelievable," Givhan said. "They did everything for us."

The line held the Pulaski defense at bay long enough on the first play to give Smith time to complete a 71-yard scoring pass to junior Greg Peck with just 22 seconds gone in the game.

"The quicker we got up on them, the more pride we stripped from them," senior lineman Ian Young said. "They started thinking and they couldn't run it the way they wanted to."

The offensive line had been in some turmoil early in the season, after graduating most of last year's unit and losing senior Patrick Wilson to a season-ending injury.

The unit, as it stands - Jeremy Enlow at center, Jacob Arnold and Zach Cooley at guard, Brandon Record and Young at tackle, and Brad Cloud, Ian Loughry and Evan Teague at tight ends - has only been together for six games now.

Assistant coach Chris Mason said the group is continually improving.

"Up until the first Pulaski game (Oct. 10), we had five different offensive linemen just about every week," Mason said. "They're finally starting to mesh together, and they're jelling a little bit and getting familiar with each other. They're really, really working hard.

"They're smaller, but they're determined to be good. I really think they're going to be very good. Give us another week of practice, who knows?"

The line played just fine against Pulaski. Smith was sacked only once, and he only lost four yards. They more than made up for that by opening up holes for Givhan (24 carries for 157 yards) and Smith (12 for 117) and helping the Rebels roll up the points they needed to top Pulaski.

"The coaches said all week that we had to put some points up on the board because we knew they had an explosive offense," Enlow said of the Maroons, who scored 82 points the previous game. "We had to come out, control the ball, and have our best game of the year."

"We just went out there and did what the coaches told us to do," Young said. "Everybody was doing it together and that made us a team. The only way you can win is if you're a team."

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