COOKEVILLE, Tenn. -Despite their best efforts to win two consecutive TSSAA Class 1A State Championship titles, Coach Vic Grider and the Pirates of South Pittsburg were unable to pull off a win at Cookeville this year.
Quarterback Austin Rice ran for two touchdowns and threw for another, lifting Wayne County to a 27-14 victory Friday over the 5-time state champion Pirates for the class 1A title.
Wayne County, playing in the championship game for the first time, finished 14-0 on the season.
Rice ran for 214 yards and passed for 66 more on a 4 for 7 effort, and was named the game’s offensive MVP.
South Pittsburg (12-3) did break one record as quarterback Jake Stone threw a 98-yard TD pass to Antonio Chubb, the longest TD pass in TSSAA BlueCross Bowl history.
Wayne County’s defense was able to preserve the win late as it forced South Pittsburg to turn the ball over on downs after getting to 1st and goal at the 3.
The Wildcats followed the turnover with a 10-play, 84-yard scoring drive, ending with Rice’s second rushing touchdown. Wayne County also recovered the onside kick, putting the game out of reach.
Wayne County’s Clint Butler was named the game’s defensive MVP, after collecting nine tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss and recording a pass breakup. Butler also rushed for 45 yards and a touchdown.
Stone threw for 166 yards and a touchdown on a 9 for 16 performance, while Demetre Johnson led South Pittsburg in rushing with 107 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries.
Our hats off to Coach Grider and the Pirates for a GREAT season!
Information source: CoachT.com