PAINTSVILLE – Two of the top defenses met in Paintsville for Friday night’s second round playoff matchup between Paintsville and Bracken County.
The Tigers flexed their muscles while the Polar Bears were left reeling in a 43-0 loss to end their record-setting season.
Paintsville held Bracken to 89 total yards in the contest and three first downs.
“I knew we were going to have a tough time on offense. They’re so big and tough up the middle and quick from end to end,” Polar Bears coach Dave Brausch said.
Meanwhile, Tyrese Allen and the Tigers racked up 378 total yards and were faced with short fields all night long to put more points on the board.
Early on, the Polar Bears defense held strong, stalling out two Paintsville drives in the red zone. But the No. 1 team in Class A started to find their way. It started late in the first when quarterback Jake Hyden was able to score on a 15-yard run, making it 7-0 Tigers with 3:55 to play in the quarter.
Hyden was able to make it 14-0 when he ran one in from two yards out, giving the Tigers a 14-0 lead, which would remain that way until halftime.
Bracken couldn’t get much going offensively, recording just one first down that came on a fake punt on 4th-and-1 in which Tad Fisher reeled off a 24-yard run.
“They took a lot away. They play everybody up so tight so you think you can get outside maybe on them because their linebackers are tight and won’t get out there, but they got some decent team speed, we couldn’t block long enough to throw the ball. So they kept crowding the line and crowding the line and made it really hard for us on offense,” Brausch said.
Then it was the Tyrese Allen show. The West Virginia commit racked up 164 all-purpose yards in the third quarter, blocked a punt and scored three touchdowns as the Tigers were able to build a 36-0 lead and get the game to a running clock with 14 seconds remaining in the third.
“He played well, but those lineman blocked well for him so he got going. He’ll probably tell you the same thing, he’s nothing without those guys,” Tigers coach Joe Chirico said.
Multiple unsportsmanlike penalties plagued the rest of the game as there were 20 combined penalties in the contest, totaling over 200 yards.
The final score of the game came on a two-yard Jaylyn Allen run to get things to 43-0, improving Paintsville to 11-1, as they’ll host Raceland next Friday for the regional championship. The Rams were able to score 31 unanswered on Paris to win 31-9.
“Raceland is a tough team. I’m just glad we got a playoff win and we’ll worry about who we play tomorrow. They’re a really, really good football team,” Chirico said.
Paintsville was paced by Tyrese Allen, who had 10 carries for 149 yards with two touchdowns to go with the receiving touchdown. Hyden threw for 126 yards and a touchdown to go with the two rushing touchdowns.
For the Polar Bears, the 9-3 record was their most wins in a season in school history and the playoff win against Fairview last week was their first in school history.
“Tonight’s not what we’re going to be remembered for. We’re going to be remembered for nine wins, winning first playoff game ever, winning nine games for the first time ever,” Brausch said. “That’s what they’ll be remembered for and anything they do over the next couple years they can take a lot of pride in that they started the foundation for.”
They’ll have to replace 11 seniors for next season, but do get their quarterback in Trey Brausch back, setting the school record with 1,336 passing yards on the season to go with running back Tad Fisher, compiling 1,606 rushing yards and 19 touchdowns this season.
In the contest, Fisher ran for 83 yards on 20 carries. The rest of the team combined for six total yards.