Highlanders tame Concord Christian Lions

Published 12:39 am Saturday, September 17, 2016

Cloudland's Preston Benfield had 92 yards passing on three throws Friday night. He would also finish with three passing touchdown.

Cloudland’s Preston Benfield had 92 yards passing on three throws Friday night. He would also finish with three passing touchdowns.

The Highlanders wasted little time in putting points on the scoreboard Friday night at Knoxville Catholic as they topped Concord Christian 68-7 in some Region 1-1A action.

Cloudland senior quarterback Preston Benfield led the Highlanders’ attack as he connected all three of his passes for 92 yards. Preston finished the night with three passing TDs.

On the ground, the Highlanders racked up 251 yards with Conner Birchfield recording 68 yards on four carries. Cloudland’s Hunter Blair had 61 yards on 11 carries.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Cloudland is now 2-0 in their conference and 2-3 overall.

After several pass attempts from quarterback Dane Davis, the Lions shanked the punt. On Cloudland’s opening series,  Noah Arnett ran the rock in for a touchdown from 22 yards out with only one minute and four seconds off the clock. Josh Blair ran in the two-point conversion, and Cloudland led 8-0.

Ethan Howell sacked the Lyons’ quarterback before the Lions were forced to punt. CHS took over at the 42-yard line. Josh Blair then had a 38-yard run. After a one-yard loss, freshman Hunter Blair went 22 yards for a touchdown. Arnett ran in the two-point conversion giving the Highlanders a 16-0 edge.

After several incomplete passes, the Lions were forced to punt again. CHS took over, and J. Blair had a 17-yard run. Quarterback Preston Benfield’s pass to Jacob Singleton went 22 yards to paydirt. Benfield ran in the two-point conversion, and Cloudland moved its lead to 24-0.

Arnett tucked the ball on an end-around run for a gain of 18 yards. The Lions stripped Arnett and took over on the one-yard line. Following another Lion punt the ‘Landers quarterback, P. Benfield hit Triston Lacy for a 17-yard touchdown pass. J. Blair then caught a two-point conversion pass making the score 32-0 at the end of the first quarter.

Second quarter action saw J. Blair ramble 24 yards followed by a one-yard scamper to score. Benfield’s pass to Jason Potter added the two-point conversion.

After a quick three and out, the Lions punted. The Highlanders wasted no time with Benfield’s  53-yard strike to Lacy for a touchdown. The score was 46 – 0 at the 11:16 mark of the second quarter.

Concord took over, and runs were stopped by the Highlander defense. Concord’s quarterback Dane Davis let loose a 63-yard TD pass to Brandenburg. The extra point was good from Evan Bachman.

Freshman Conner Birchfield took over at the QB position for the Highlanders. A CHS fumble gave the ball back to Concord. Cloudland’s Kenny Wagoner intercepted a pass and ran in for the touchdown.

The halftime score was CHS 54, Concord Christian 7.

Cloudland’s Conner Birchfield ran for 35 yards on a keeper. Then he ran in a six-yard TD to make the score 60 – 7, Cloudland, at the end of the third quarter.

To open the fourth quarter, a fumble by the Lions was recovered by the Highlanders. The shifty Birchfield ran the ball down inside the red zone. The ‘Landers had a turnover on downs at the one-yard line. Davis’s pass was intercepted by Highlander Kenny Wagoner which set up a Dillon Johnson 13 yard touchdown run. The two-point conversion attempt to Dillon Johnson was good to make the score 68 – 7, Cloudland.

Birchfield intercepted the football and ran it back to the 25. For the remaining snaps, Cloudland took a knee.