The Pikeville Panthers are currently ranked number one in the state in Kentucky in 1A football. This past Friday night, football fans in southwest Virginia found out why.
The Panthers took command of an interstate matchup against one of Southwest Virginia’s finest, the Ridgeview Wolfpack, midway through the second quarter and never looked back. Pikeville used its high powered offense to win the contest going away by a final of 67-28.
As the contest got underway on a chilly southeast Kentucky evenng, it appeared the Wolfpack would be able to hold their own against the king of the Bluegrass. Trenton Adkins continued his remarkable junior season with an 80 yard kickoff return for a score on the opening kick. The Panthers answered back a little over two minutes later as quarterback Isaac McNamee found Jackson Hensley for an eight yard touchdown pass.
After both teams traded three and outs on their next possessions, the Wolfpack special teams delivered the next huge play. An errant Panther snap went over punter Tanner Hamilton’s head and into the endzone. Hamilton attempted to boot the ball out of the back of the endzone for a safety, but missed the ball. Colt Fletcher recovered the ball for a Ridgeview touchdown to put the Wolfpack back in front. The Panthers answered back less than a minute later as McNamee found Clay Tinsley for a 69 yard strike. The PAT failed and after one quarter of play, the Wolfpack had a 14-13 advantage on the scoreboard.
McNamee found Tinsley again on a 68 yard touchdown pass a minute and a half into the second. The Wolfpack once again answered back and took the lead on a Trenton Adkins 25 yard scamper at the 7:39 mark of the first half. The 21-19 advantage would prove to be the last lead of the night for the team from the commonwealth. Fifteen seconds later, the Panthers took the lead for good on a 97 yard kickoff return by Hensley. Hensley achieved the hat trick on the Panthers next possession, scoring his third from 15 yards on a run. The Panthers capped off the first half scoring with a Jon Collum 16 yard run with 41 seconds left in the half to make the advantage 40-21 at the half in favor of Pikeville.
McNamee called his own number in the third quarter, scoring on a quarterback keeper from three yards out before adding his fourth touchdown throwing. McNamee found Zac Lockhart seven seconds into the fourth quarter for a seven yard scoring strike. With the contest out of reach for the Wolfpack, even the Panther reserves got in on the scoring spree. Cody Raines scored on a one yard carry at the 10:14 mark of the contest. Ridgeview scored on the ensuing possession, as Cannon Hill threw his first career touchdown pass to Timmy Hess from 27 yards out. The Panthers had the final say however as Carson Wright put an exclamation point on the contest with a 53 yard scoring jaunt with 1:37 left to provide the final 67-28 margin.
Leading the way for Pikeville was McNamee who had 15 completions out of 22 attempts for 293 yards and four touchdowns through the air, adding a score on the ground as well. Jon Collum led the potent Panther ground game with 73 yards on only five carries with one touchdown. Clay Tinsley hauled in three receptions for 144 yards and two scores.
The Wolfpack were lead by Trenton Adkins who rushed for 134 yards on 26 carries with one touchdown as well as the opening kickoff return.
Pikeville now looks ahead to the KHSAA playoffs after an undefeated 10-0 regular season. The Panthers have a bye in round one before facing the winner of Hazard and Phelps on November 15.
Ridgeview will look to rebound against the Honaker Tigers in their regular season finale and senior night on November 8. A win by the Wolfpack will clinch the number one seed in the upcoming Region 2D playoff bracket.
I was born a Haysi Tiger but unfortunately succumbed to a broken heart on a cold rainy afternoon in King William, Virginia on December 6, 2014.
However, I was reincarnated as a Wolf, and became a runner of the Ridgeview Wolfpack on August 28, 2015. You now hear me howling most autumn Friday nights high atop Rose Ridge in Dickenson County or anywhere else my Pack of hungry Wolves may be, from Grundy to Falcon Hill or from Ben Hur to Pikeville, Kentucky.
I never wolfed down (pun very intended) a Tiger Taco like Mr. Brady Hess, but I was and still am known to devour a pizza from Pizza Factory on Main Street in Haysi.
I have always wanted to write about sports and now I have the opportunity to thanks to those who have built this wonderful place on the world wide web. Hope y’all enjoy.