HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: The Crown Fits; Panthers hold off Russellville to win sixth state title

Pikeville head coach Chris McNamee talked about how much his team’s difficult schedule paid off in the end Friday afternoon in the team’s heart stopping 30-27 state championship game win over Russellville in the Class 1A matchup at Kroger Field.

“Our schedule, playing against some very good teams, helped us to survive today,” the veteran coach said following the school’s sixth title win. “That was an outstanding team, and we knew they had talent and speed.”

The Panthers, who finished 14-2, stopped Russellville on their final drive and then Blake Birchfield’s short first-down run milked the clock.

The game’s most valuable player rushed for 179 yards and two first-quarter touchdowns on 30 carries.

Quarterback Isaac McNamee passed for 74 yards, 52 of those to Wade Hensley to push his team up 20-13 after Russellville had tied the game.

McNamee ran four yards for a score to push the lead to 27-10.

Pikeville’s final points came on Aaron Chang’s 23-yard field with 23 seconds left in the opening half. The kick provided the margin of victory.

At Lexington

(Class 1A state championship)


PK (14-2)…..20  10  0  0 – 30

RV (12-2)….13    7   7  0 – 27


First Quarter

PK – Blake Birchfield, 3-yard run (kick failed), 5:33

RV – Jaquis Todd, 63-yard run (kick failed), 4:32

PK – Blake Birchfield, 7-yard run (Aaron Chang kick), 3:28

RV – Anthony Woodard, 44-yard pass from Lennon Ries (Dustin Brown kick), 2:25

PK – Wade Hensley, 52-yard pass from Isaac McNamee (Aaron Chang kick), 2:12

Second Quarter

PK – Isaac McNamee, 4-yard run (Aarn Chang kick), 8:45

PK – Aaron Chang, 23-yard field goal, :23

RV – Anthony Woodard, 4-yard pass from Jovari Gamble (Dustin Brown kick), :00

Third Quarter

RV – Jaquis Todd, 46-yard run (Dustin Brown kick), 9:21

Fourth Quarter

No scoring