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Blue Devils top HV behind Thompson

BY ALLEN LAMOUNTAIN
STAR CORRESPONDENT
When you hold a team to 29 yards rushing you will win a lot of games, but senior quarterback Brock Thompson completed 12-for-20 passes for 300 yards and three touchdowns as Unicoi County upset Happy Valley 31-14 on Warrior Hill on Friday night.
“I’m the defensive backs coach and I guess I need to be fired and until we learn to teach the game properly it’s going to be a long season,” Warriors head coach Jason Jarrett said. “That all falls back on me.
“It is absolutely ridiculous. We started with a lead and kicked the ball where we wanted to and they got a big return on it. I’m trying to teach these guys it is a three-phase game and they come down and score on one play and it’s 7-6 and we lose momentum.”
The Warriors (1-2) got on the scoreboard first with senior quarterback Eli Ayers capping a seven-play, 65-yard drive with a 29-yard option run. The two-point run failed but Happy Valley led 6-0.
It took just one play for Unicoi County to respond as senior quarterback Brock Thompson connected with Evan Huff on a 43-yard pass play and with the point after kick from Miguel Vasquez the Blue Devils took a 7-6 advantage.
After forcing an HV punt the Devils (2-2) drove to the Warriors 19-yard line from where Vasquez connected on a 37-yard field goal to stake Unicoi County a 10-6 lead.
The Warriors lost a fumble on their next possession and UC struck quickly once again hitting sophomore tight end Lucas Slagle with a quick pass and Slagle split the safeties and scored on a 59-yard pass and run for a 17-6 Blue Devils lead.
“We are shooting ourselves in the foot offensively,” Jarrett said. We just didn’t play well in a lot of areas.”
The Blue Devils continued to make big plays in the third period with Huff catching his second touchdown catch – this from 13 yards – to stake UC to a 24-6 advantage.
Then after forcing a Warriors punt the Devils drove 33 yards from where Nehemiah Edwards scored on a one-yard run for a 31-6 Unicoi County lead with 4:51 left in the third period.
The Warriors answered with an 80-yard drive on 11 plays with Matthew Bahn scoring on a 17-yard run. Bahn finished with a game-high 160 yards rushing on 28 carries. Bahn’s run made it a 31-14 contest after Ayers connected with Babb on the deuce.
“This is a big momentum builder for us,” Thompson said. “I think they expected us to run the ball more and they concentrated on stopping that, so we went to the passing game and I hope we can continue to throw the ball like we did tonight against Claiborne next week.”
Unicoi County 7 10 14 0 – 31
Happy Valley   6  0   8 0 – 14
Scoring summary
First Quarter
H – Ayers 29 run (run failed)
U – Huff 43 pass from Thompson (Vasquez kick) 3:54
Second Quarter
U – FG Vasquez 37 11:55
U – Slagle 59 pass from Thompson (Vasquez kick) 8:12
Third Quarter
U – Huff 13 pass from Thompson (Velasquez kick) 9:50
U – Edwards 1 run (Velasquez kick) 4:51
H – Bahn 17 run (Ayers pass to Babb):7.2