Charger offense shifts into high gear

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By Thomas Barr

 MOUNT WASHINGTON -- It is often hard to get a coach to smile.

And it is equally difficult to get a coach to state any satisfaction with his team's play -- especially after just four games.

But, inside, Bullitt East head football coach Darrell Vincent has be pleased after his Chargers avenged a loss last season by defeating Spencer County 42-14.

And it really wasn't' that close.

Take away a couple of big plays and the Bullitt East defense was in total control.

The victory runs Bullitt East's record to a perfect 4-0 on the season.

"I'm really proud of the kids," said Vincent, whose team was shut out 28-0 by the Bears last season. "They have 14-15 formations and the kids really worked hard to prepare."

While pleased with the defense, Vincent had equal reason to be happy with the offensive effort.

Quarterback Pierce Kelly carried the ball 13 times for 203 yards and four touchdowns. Austin Colvin added two touchdowns and 129 yards.

The Chargers did not attempt a pass on a night where they amassed 391 yards on the ground.

"Except for two plays, we played very well," said Vincent.

The home team got off to a dangerously explosive start. Taking the opening kickoff eight plays, Colvin blasted through the line for a 6-yard touchdown.

Unfortunately, the traditional fireworks shot off after a score went wrong. One of the fireworks went across the field and struck the fence on the Spencer County sidelines. Two students were treated for minor injuries.

While the fireworks were through for the night, the Charger offense wasn't.

Following Dillon Heichelbech's extra point, Spencer County came right back on its first play from scrimmage.

Jacob Derudder eluded the rush and found Shawn Boykin for a 60-yard score. Derek Clemens tied the score at 7-7.

Bullitt East followed with a 15-play drive. Kelly capped off the drive by keeping the ball and getting into the end zone from two yards out with 57 seconds left. Heichelbech's kick made it 14-7.

The Charger defense held but Clemens' punt was fumbled and recovered by the Bears. The defense would hold once again.

Colvin would get his second score of the game as he got loose from 44 yards out for a 21-7 lead.

The Bears cut the lead in half when Boykin got free and scored on a 59-yard run with 2:34 left in the first half.

Disaster struck when Xavier Nelson recovered a Charger fumble at the 17. But disaster was averted as Zach Allen intercepted the pass at the Charger 3 to close out the half.

Bullitt East dominated the play after intermission.

Kelly kept the ball and ran 61 yards for a touchdown with 5:11 left in the third period.

Shane Satori's hit on DeRudder resulted in a fumble recovery by Evan Kerr.

From the 7, Kelly got the ball into the end zone for a 35-14 lead.

The final score came with 8:59 left in the game. After Kelly ran for 72 yards, the junior signalcaller finished off the drive from the 1.

Vincent said there was no talk by the coaches about revenge. That was handled by the players.

The biggest difference this season is that that underclassmen of last year are now juniors and seniors.

"You can see that leadership," said Vincent. 

He credited players like Kerr and Brandon Samuels for taking leadership roles. And Robert Hartley is handling all the defensive calls on the field.

Spencer County has some very talented players in the skill position and Vincent said the Bears are a very good team.

On this particular night, Vincent said the Chargers had a very good performance.

Offensively, Vincent said the line is playing very well and Kelly is surrounded by a lot of experienced players.

That has taken some of the pressure off the first-year starter.

"He's getting confidence," Vincent said of Kelly. "He is starting to see things and he's making big plays."

Over the past couple of years, the quarterback was not a major part of the running game. Kelly is starting to become another threat the defense must account for.

"We're getting better," said Vincent. "The kids are stepping up."

With more depth on both sides of the ball, Vincent said the Chargers are a much better team. But like any coach, he said there is still room for much improvement.

NEXT GAME -- The Chargers will go on the road Friday to play Central Hardin. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m.