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Austin Robbie, Tyler Whittington and Austin Phillips gang up to tackle Hendersonville's Desean Jackson in varsity football action last week. Photo by Josh Bare

Originally published: 2012-10-04 15:31:44
Last modified: 2012-10-04 15:31:44

Vikings shut out at home for first time this century by Bearcats

Jamie Shell / (

The albatross that has been the lack of Avery Vikings football offensive punch again reared its head despite a shakeup in strategy in the conference game on Friday, Sept. 28, against Hendersonville.
Although the Big Red defense held the Bearcats to only seven first-half points and 19 for the contest, AHS was unable to punch the ball into the end zone in a 19-0 loss, the team's fifth consecutive defeat.
Avery's strategy facing the state-ranked HHS club was to make the game clock run as quickly as possible, limiting the opportunities for the Bearcats offense to possess the football. For the vast majority of the contest, AHS succeeded in shortening the contest.
Hendersonville managed to draw first blood in the opening moments of the second quarter, however, when quarterback Grant Rivers high jumped across the goal line from one yard out for a 7-0 HHS lead with 11:22 left in the first half. The teams battled until halftime, as Avery used a predominantly heavy dose of its rushing attack to chew time and yardage. The Vikings was never able to sustain drives in the half, though, punting to end three of its four possessions in the first two period. In total, Avery mustered just 42 yards of total offense against the Bearcats for the half, compared to 168 yards for the visitors.
AHS tried to jumpstart its attack by using an onside kick to open the third period, but HHS was granted possession. The first HHS play from scrimmage resulted in a turnover, however, and Avery gained possession, driving the football to the Bearcats 15-yard line. On fourth down the Big Red opted to go for the first down and was unable to convert and capitalize.
Hendersonville upon regaining possession marched 85 yards in 14 plays, capping a 6:03 drive with a 10-yard run by Desean Jackson. The extra point failed, but HHS led 13-0 with 3:23 left in the third period.
Following another unsuccessful fourth-down conversion in Hendersonville territory by the Vikings, HHS proceeded to march 63 yards in seven plays, capping its final scoring drive of the night with a 14-yard Rivers scamper to account for the final scoring margin.
Luke Childress again paced the AHS rushing attack for the evening with 64 yards on 13 carries. Quarterback Tre Jackson chipped in with 32 yards on six carries. Jackson finished the night 6-for-16 passing for 76 yards.
Rivers accounted for 154 yards rushing on 17 attempts, to go with an 8-for-13 passing performance for 82 yards. Jackson added 96 rushing yards on 16 carries.
The Vikings (2-5, 0-3 WHC) venture to Columbus this week to take on Polk County.
In junior varsity football action, the Vikings fell at Hendersonville on Thursday, Sept. 27, by the final score of 38-7.

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