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LOUISVILLE - The Bullitt Central Cougars tried and tried and tried some more on Friday night, but no matter how hard they tried, they couldn’t win by less than 64-6 against woefully outmatched Atherton.
If there was a pre-determined victory in high school football this season, this was it. Atherton was winless this fall against relatively weak foes. The Rebels dressed just 25 players for this game and some of those were freshmen.
The Cougars moved to 4-0 and face another winless team, Waggener, this Friday in another trip into Jefferson County.
Bullitt Central head coach Danny Leasor really did try to keep the score down against the Rebels. Atherton fans actually applauded the Cougars as they left the field for a number of reasons.
**The Cougars top running back, senior Jeremaie Bennett, carried the ball just twice. He scored both times he touched the ball and still finished with 100 yards on the ground.
**Bullitt Central did not attempt a pass in the game.
**In the final minute of the first half, already ahead 51-0, Bullitt Central intercepted a fourth down pass and returned it to the Rebels’ 5-yard line. The Cougars could have easily scored again, but back-up quarterback Andrew Jackson was directed to take a knee and the clock ran out.
After the game, Leasor asked to speak to the Atherton team and he tried to give them a boost.
“The Atherton kids played hard until the end,” the veteran coach said over the weekend. “They are just so depleted on both sides of the ball.
“I told them after the game that it wasn’t that long ago that we played games with running clocks,” the coach added. “They just need to listen to their coaches and work hard and get the program rebuilt.”
Leasor was pleased with his own team in that they stayed focused and took care of business even if it didn’t take a lot of effort.
“Our kids did what they were supposed to do,” the coach said. “Defensively, they had one big play with the long run against the junior-varsity kids. Other than that, we played well.
“Our kids came in and we executed the game plan,” Leasor added. “I was pleased that they didn’t clown around. They were told not to take off their pads when they came off the field. They stayed on the sideline and supported the others in the game.”
Bullitt Central scored 37 points in the first quarter and 51 in the first half and both totals may well be school records.
On the second play of the game Bullitt Central got a safety and on the next play after the free kick, senior running back Terry Coulter bolted 32 yards for a touchdown.
Atherton struggled all night with poor punting, but the only good punt of the night backed Bullitt Central up to its own 35-yard line. It took just one play for Bennett to race 65 yards to the end zone.
Each of the next two times Bullitt Central kicked off, Atherton fumbled and the Cougars recovered. Bennett scored from 35 yards out after the first fumble and after the second, Bullitt Central had their only turnover of the night, a fumble.
Still, before the end of the quarter, Coulter scored again on a 46-yard run and T.J. Flener went 45 yards for a touchdown. Bullitt Central ran eight plays in the first quarter with five touchdowns, a penalty and two fumbles (only one of which was lost).
In the second quarter, Bullitt Central added touchdowns on a 36-yard run by Jackson and a 1-yard dive by James Johnson.
In the second half, the clock ran continuously. Bullitt Central did score on a 2-yard run by Jackson and then closed out the scoring with a 48-yard run by Johnson.
After five of the touchdowns, Wade Curtsinger kicked the extra points. Louis Faust handled the extra points after the final three touchdowns.
Atherton’s only score came on a 74-yard run by xxxx Murray on the first play of the fourth quarter.
Bullitt Central finished with 407 yards of total offense with all of that coming on the ground. Atherton countered with 140 yards of total offense which included minus-3 in the passing game.
Next Game: Bullitt Central will complete its four-game road swing with the first Class 5-A district game of the season. Waggener will be the opponent and the Wildcats are winless this season after falling to North Bullitt 23-9 last Friday.
Game time in St. Matthews is set for 7:30 p.m.