2017-09-13 / Sports

Bears pummel Panthers for fourth straight win

By David Stembridge

Senior quarterback Bill Knight had a 30-yard touchdown run and threw 79 yards for the Bears against Lakeside High on Friday night. Senior quarterback Bill Knight had a 30-yard touchdown run and threw 79 yards for the Bears against Lakeside High on Friday night. The 3- AAAA Burke County Bears (4-0) defeated 3-AAAAAA Lakeside High (0-3) 38-3 on Friday night in Evans.

Burke County Bear fans braved the coastal evacuation traffic heading north and fully packed the stands at Lakeside High School as the Bears defeated the Panthers for their fourth straight win of the season. Head coach Eric Parker thought that, defensively, they played great all night.

“We had a game plan and followed it. I thought we did a pretty good job. We gave up a few passes, but you’ve got to figure that as much as they were throwing, they would hit us with some,” he said. “I thought the defense pretty much controlled the game.”

The Bears worked slowly but held back the Panthers on their first two drives, finally scoring their first touchdown with under four minutes on the clock. Sophomore running back Leon Mcgee had a 10-yard run into the end zone followed by a good kick by senior Jeremy Tinley for a score of 7-0.

After a quick turnaround, the Bears picked back up on Lakeside’s 25-yard line at the start of the second quarter. After a fumble, Lakeside recovered the ball but was held back and punted back to the Bears, who returned the ball and put Mcgee in position to score again. Tinley’s PAT was good giving the Bears a lead of 14-0.

Lakeside kept possession for most of the second quarter but were held back from scoring and the first half ended with no more scores.

Parker said he thought their pass defense did well.

“We jumped in and out of some coverages and I thought the guys handled the transitions well. I’m pleased at the way we played defensively,” he said.

The Panthers kicked off but recovered the ball as the third quarter started and were able to get in to kick a 32-yard field goal, putting them on the board for the first time this season. The score was now 14-3.

The Bears came back with renewed energy on their first drive, and senior quarterback Bill Knight slipped through, running 30 yards into the end zone, scoring another touchdown for the Bears. Tinley’s kick fell short for a score of 20- 3. The third quarter yielded no more scores, but the Bears did move the ball up to Lakeside’s 6-yard line.

The fourth quarter started with senior running back Jayln Odom carrying the ball 6 yards across the line for another touchdown. A conversion point attempt was no good. The score was 26-3.

Senior linebacker Marcelo Snelling intercepted a pass on Lakeside’s next drive, and the Bears scored on their return drive as senior running back Cameron Holmes rushed 24 yards for the touchdown. Tinley’s kick was good for a score of 33-3.

After another quick turnaround, the Bears seemed unchallenged as senior running back Damari Kelly carried the ball 20 yards in for the final score. Freshman kicker Jacob Hickman’s kick was no good, but the Bears were ahead 39-3 and remained there as the game ended.

“I think the chemistry is great,” Parker said. “The guys are pulling for each other, and we are trying to get better. We have a lot of work to do, but I think each week we have more and more guys playing well.”

The Bears do not play this Friday.


Burke County had a total of 460 yards compared to Lakeside’s 70. They had 100 passing yards over Lakeside’s 62. The Bears had 7 penalties for 55 yards, and the Panthers had 9 for 55 yards. The Bears also had one turnover.


Bill Knight completed 6 of 14 passes for 79 yards. Damari Kelly threw the ball 12 yards on one completed pass, and Juan’ya Dove completed 1 of 4 passes for 9 yards.


Bill Knight had 15 carries for 88 yards; Cameron Holmes, 7 for 58 yards; and Juan’ya Dove, 7 for 51 yards.


Dallas Rogers caught 4 passes for 45 yards and Leon Mcgee, 1 for 22 yards.


Eric Laforce had 6 solo tackles; Renzia Cobb, 5 solo and one assist; and Keith Walker, 3 solo.

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