Sunday, September 21, 2008

High School Friday Nights: Lincoln County (GA) at Abbeville

By Russ

A-town Rolls to Victory over Lincoln Co., GA (28-17)

Went to the Abbeville High School football game tonight, the weather was perfect. The Abbeville Panthers beat the Lincoln Co., GA Red Devils (28-17). Abbeville had a packed house, traffic was terrible and finding a parking spot was tough. I heard some say they haven't seen it this crowded since some of the Woodruff games back in the '70's. Anyway, there was plenty of excitement and electricity in the air. Lincolnton brought a good crowd.

First quarter, Abbeville had to punt their first time out. Later on, Abbeville got an interception, which led them to score first with a big 35 yd pass play with 3:10 in the 1rst qrt ( Abb. 7- Linc. 0). Lincolnton turned right around and scored on the next opening drive with a 73 yd halfback pass wiht 2:58 left in the first 1rst qrt. They missed the PAT (Abb. 7 - Linc. 6).

Second Quarter, Lincolnton poured the offense on. They scored on a 20 yd run, then followed up with a 2pt conversion, making the score (Abb. 7 - Linc. 14). Abbeville fumbled giving Linclonton good field position. Then came some really ugly moments. Lincolnton drew two back-to-back unsportsmen like penalties. First, from a player, followed by one from the sidelines. Lincolnton was still able to put points on the board thanks to their field goal kicker who booted one from 39 yards out. (Abb. 7 - Linc. 17). Abbeville was able to get on the board late in the 2nd half with a 13 yard pass to Sammy Head making the score (Abb. 14 - Linc. 17). I'm not sure who the player was that got the following interception for Abbeville during the next Lincolton drive, but I hope it made the high-light reel, it looked as if he went vertical 4ft in the air and caught the ball one handed. Abbeville was unable to do anything with the ball. The half ended (Abb. 14 - Linc. 17).

The third quarter saw no score from either team with several possessions from each. Abbeville moved the ball well, starting off the fourth quarter. They were running and passing . They got down to a key point with a fourth & inches. The quarterback keeper was big, with a 4 yard gain. This led to Abbeville scoring another TD. With 7:40 left in the game it was (Abb. 21 - Linc. 17). There was a lot of fumbling that happened next, on both sides, which led to some excitement and tension. Abbeville fumbled, Lincolnton recovered. Lincolnton fumbled, Abbeville recovered. Abbeville fumbled, but this time they retain possession. With Abbeville facing a third and nineteen, due to a couple of penalties, they had a big run with the option, Michael Thackson ran 74 yards giving the Panthers another TD (Abb. 27 - Linc. 17) with 4:05 left to play. Lincolnton goes into a hurry up offense. But, with 3:09 left to play, Daniel Sorrow of Abbeville comes up with an huge interception. Abbeville essentially is able to run the time off the clock and seal the victory.

For any of you who remembers Abbeville and Lincolnton playing back in the 80's. They use to beat Abbeville thoroughly. It would be like 56 to 0. So, Abbeville is able to feel a little redemption, after all these years. Abbeville has a really balanced offense and an equally strong defense. The play-offs have not been really good to Abbeville the past few years, hopefully they can play for a championship this December. Anybody heading to Ware Shoals next Friday night?

Oh, yeah. Rating the game and such. Crowd was really into the game. Seating, good luck the place was packed. I'm just glad I brought a chair. I would rate the stadium B+. The coaching was good from both sides, but Abbeville was able to capitalize on turn overs. Referees, I'm not to sure on. They blew a call on Lincolnton's very first play. The ball hit the ground and bounced into the players hand and it wasn't blown dead. I'm sure that Lincolnton fans would probably say that the ref's were biased. I'm not sure what was said to draw those unsportsman like penalties, but it could not have been good. Lincolnton also drew a side-line encroachment penalty also during the game. The field looked to be in good shape. The concessions and the toilets had long lines, but with a crowd that size you had better expect such. Overall, it was a really good expierence, I rate it an A.

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