Things snowball fast when you’ve got the kind of defense that Louisa County has. But the Lions needed something to work with, something to get the ball rolling. As it turns out, back-to-back sacks late in the first quarter to force a punt was the charm. The resulting avalanche was 42 unanswered points that were scored in just 17 minutes of football. After the monstrous second quarter and a stifling start to the third, Louisa was able to cruise in the second half to a 49-12 victory over visiting King George.
“King George came out and did some unique things, particularly on defense that took us a little bit to figure out what to do there but once we started attacking on offense things turned around,” said Louisa coach Will Patrick. “But man, our defense tonight was just flying around. There are so many good defensive players on this team that know how to fly around, how to hit, how to communicate well and just buy into what we’re about here. Our gameplan was to get after the quarterback and I think we made them awfully uncomfortable back there.”
The Foxes drew first blood by scoring on their opening possession which began at midfield after the Lions turned the ball over on downs. On the legs of Tyler Harrison, King George marched up to the goalline and quarterback Charles Mutter was able to make it 6-0 on a 3-yard run.
It was on the next Foxes drive that the Lions brought their crowd to life after back-to-back sacks killed any momentum that King George had built up. Louisa took a 7-6 lead to start the second quarter on a 1-yard run from Jarett Hunter. It was the first of six unanswered touchdowns.
With Adrain Williams and Aaron Aponte absolutely wrecking the Foxes on defense with sacks and tackles for losses, the Lions continuously started drives with short fields.
“After they scored we went to the sidelines and made a few adjustments,” Williams said. “I had to pull the line together and tell them all to step up, that we had to go out and do our thing.”
King George was able to come up with a fumble at its own one yard line on defense, but save for a scoop and score on a punt block in the fourth quarter, that was the lone bright spot for the visitors after Mutter’s early score.
Louisa went up 14-6 after Hunter improvised on a passing play to come up with a 25-yard scramble into the endzone.
“The offensive line did a great job of staying on their guys to where I just said, ‘Ok, I’ve got to get out of here,’” Hunter said. “If I get sacked there that’s on me and I don’t want to make them look bad. I saw the one hole, a nice little gap and then was able to do the rest on the ground to get into the endzone.”
His third rushing touchdown, an 8-yard run, made it 21-6 and the death knell came on the ensuing kickoff which King George neglected to jump on top of the ball, setting the Lions up with another very short field. With 13 seconds left in the half, Hunter found Noah Robinson for a 2-yard touchdown reception to make it 28-6.
“We kind of stalled in the first quarter but in the second it was all about getting into a groove,” Hunter said. “We wanted to get up big early so we could get our second string guys some love in the second half.”
The Lions started the second half with yet another short field, this time after Austin Sims came up with an interception. That led to a 3-yard Alex Washington rushing touchdown. Then Aponte gave Louisa a running clock at 42-6 with 8:31 left in the third on a punt block which he recovered for a touchdown.
From there the rest was largely ceremonial. The Foxes picked up a special teams touchdown and the Lions scored with their second stringers on offense when Isaiah Colvin marched in from a yard out to wrap up the scoring at 49-12.
For Louisa, Hunter ran 10 times for 76 yards and three touchdowns while passing for 85 yards and picking up a fourth touchdown in the air. Robinson led the passing attack with his there receptions for 43 yards and a score. Despite allowing the Foxes to score on their opening drive, the Lions defense gave up just 72 yards by the game’s end.
“It’s a long season but we’re 1-0 right now,” Patrick said. “We started in early August and now we’re trying to get into late November. These kids come to work everyday. We do somethings at Louisa that not a lot of programs do — we ask a lot of our kids and they respond. Our biggest things now is making sure we stay unselfish. We haven’t played a perfect game yet and I wonder what it would look like if we did.”
Louisa will host fifth seeded Patrick-Henry (Ashland) in the Region 4B semifinals. The Lions are 7-2 in their last nine playoff games dating back to the 2017 post season.