The win sends the Midcats to the state semifinals, which will be played Saturday at Lexington Catholic, which will also host the championship game Sunday at 2 p.m..
Trigg will play 2nd Region winner Meece Middle School at noon. Trigg assistant coach Ralph Stevens said Meece, located in Pulaski County, is a heavily pass-oriented team.
Saturday, Trigg was outsized at most positions by the Panthers, but the Midcats capitalized on turnovers and field position to claim the win.
Russellville’s first possession lasted over four minutes and spanned most of the field, but on 3rd-and-1 on Trigg’s 7-yard line, the Panthers fumbled a bad snap and Trigg recovered. The ensuing Midcat drive lasted into the second quarter and was capped by a 48-yard touchdown pass from Luke McKenzie to Quentin Bird.
The Panthers answered with a quick scoring drive to tie the score at 6-6 before halftime.
Almost all of the second half was played in Trigg’s defensive end, but Russellville was never able to score.
The Panthers took possession to start the first overtime period, but for the third time in the game, Trigg’s defensive line pounced on a bad snap.
After a seven-yard run by Skylar Pool gave Trigg the ball three yards from the end zone, McKenzie took over. Back-to-back sneaks moved the ball inside the 1-yard line, then on fourth down, he bootlegged to the right and beat Panther defenders to the end zone.
Jayven Jones ran for 64 yards on 15 carries to lead Trigg on the ground. McKenzie finished 4-for-12 for 118 yards, and Bird caught three passes for 101 yards.
The win lifted the Midcats’ spirits after last Tuesday’s 16-14 loss to Christian County in the Southern Pennyrile Conference District Championship. In that contest, McKenzie scored on a 1-yard run and a 47-yard pass to Bird. Jones added a two-point conversion for Trigg.