News from the Tennessee Valley Sports

Lawrence Co. rolls in opener
Matthew Pugh runs, passes Red Devils past East Lawrence

By Paul Stackhouse · 340-2460

CADDO — Lawrence County High senior quarterback Matthew Pugh had something to prove Friday night.

A week earlier, the Red Devils lost by 58 points in a jamboree game, and Pugh wanted to show that the Red Devils still could win their season opener.

The proof came at the expense of East Lawrence as the Red Devils rolled to a 36-6 victory over the Eagles.

In the win, Pugh ran for three touchdowns while passing for two more.

Pugh carried the ball 23 times for 133 yards.

It marked a big turnaround from the 58-0 jamboree loss to Cordova.

“After last week, everybody was saying we couldn’t win,” Pugh said. “We had to prove we could win, and that’s what we did tonight. We had two really good practices this week, and they helped to get us back where we need to be.

“East Lawrence is a rivalry for us, but so is Rogers next week. The Rogers game is going to be a lot bigger because they’re in our region. Hopefully, winning tonight is a step in the right direction.”

The Red Devils controlled the game offensively and defensively.

Lawrence County had 320 yards of
offense, 212 of which came on the ground.

On defense, the Red Devils limited East Lawrence to 80 yards.

Taking advantage of an East Lawrence fumble at its own 5, Pugh ran for a touchdown on the first play after that, and Lawrence County had an 8-0 lead.

In the second period, Pugh threw to Josh Gaines for a 14-yard touchdown pass. He then threw for another score on a 17-yard completion to John Thomas Louallen.

East Lawrence quarterback Martin Garner cut the advantage to 21-6 at halftime as he scored on a 1-yard run as the horn sounded to end the second quarter.

Pugh continued his offensive charge with a 8-yard touchdown run in the third quarter. He added an 8-yard scoring run in the final period.

“After getting shellacked last week, I was a little bit worried about this game tonight,” Lawrence County coach Ernie Ferguson said. “Overall, I’m happy with the way we played. We made some mistakes that we need to work on, but we capitalized on their mistakes, which helped us a lot.

“I was really excited at the way we practiced after getting beat by Cordova. A lot of people don’t know just how good they are, but we do. And after getting beat like we did, I’m proud of the way we bounced back. It was a good opener for us and should help us get ready for Rogers next week.”

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