After three weeks, they’ve still given up 59 points.
The Wildcat defense scored three touchdowns and held Reidland to 28 yards in a 56-0 thumping of the Greyhounds Sept. 10 at Perdue Field in the district opener for both teams.
Trigg County returned an fumble and an interception for touchdowns less than four minutes into the game.
The Wildcat offense didn’t sniff much of the field in the first half, running just 13 plays during their 4:57 on the field.
"Our defense came out focused and played with confidence. We had a simplified game plan and they executed it well," Wildcat Coach Curtis Higgins said.
The offense wasn’t too shabby either.
Six different players scored eight times in the first half, outgaining Reidland 179 to minus-six yards. The Wildcats scored 28 points in both the first and second quarters, despite owning the football for just 1:16 of the second quarter.
On the third play of the game, Kewanis Kennedy blitzed from the right side and sacked Reidland quarterback Matt Cornwell, who fumbled the football. Frank Russell scooped it up and returned it nine yards for the score.
The first of six Jacob Wadlington extra points made the score 7-0 with 11:41 left in the opening quarter.
Three plays later, the Wildcat defense struck again as Steven Wadlington picked off a Cornwell pass and returned it 30 yards for another score.
The Greyhounds crossed midfield just once in the game, with that drive ending at the Wildcat 42 on downs.
Steven Wadlington made the score 21-0 with a 50-yard gallop up the middle with 5:27 left in the quarter.
The Wildcat offense scored the next four times they touched the football.
Jake Wallace caught a 7-yard pass across the middle, Rick Woods scored on a 19-yard run, and Jon Wilson scored on runs of 36 and 9 yards to give the Wildcats a 49-0 lead with 6:59 left in the half.
Jeremy Styers fumbled a handoff deep in Reidland territory on the ensuing drive, and Kennedy picked it up and returned it 19 yards for the score.
With the scoreboard showing 56-0 with 5:35 left in the half, both coaches agreed to play the rest of the game with a running clock.
Playing reserves, the second half turned into a punting contest with only one drive by either team ending in something other than a punt. That was a fumble by the Wildcat freshman squad on their last drive.
Trigg County needed only 26 plays to roll up 226 yards of offense. That number would have likely doubled if not for the good field position the Greyhounds gave the Wildcats. Four of Trigg’s five first half drives began in Reidland
Wilson was the leading rusher for the Wildcats, totaling 69 yards on just three carries.
Steven Wadlington added 59 yards on two carries as eight different backs carried the football for the Wildcats.
Tommy Woodall completed all four of his pass attempts for just 21 yards. Wallace caught three of those for 25 yards.
The Wildcat defense forced three fumbles, scoring off two of those, and had five sacks. While Reidland is not the same caliber of team as Mayfield or Graves County, who the Wildcats gave up large chunks of yardage to, there was a marked improvement.
Reidland finished with minus-23 yards rushing on 20 carries and 28 yards of total offense. The Greyhounds mustered only two first downs in the contest.
"It was a matter of us redeeming ourselves and playing like we were capable of," Kennedy said after returning a fumble for a touchdown against Reidland for a second consecutive year. "The coaches told us that if we didn’t play, they would put people in that would play. We don’t need that. We’re a state championship caliber team, and we need to play like it."
Seeing the success Mayfield and Graves County had throwing the football against the Wildcats, Reidland tried to throw early but misfired on nine of their first ten pass attempts.
"We tried to throw early, but there were a few guys we didn’t pick up. Those defensive touchdowns set the tone for the whole game," Reidland Head Coach Jeff Sturm said. "Hats off to Trigg County. They’re the real deal."
After giving up 457 yards passing in their first two games, Higgins decided to scrap his man-to-man defense on the receivers in place of a zone.
"We’ve talked about that for a while and decided to put it in during the off week,"the Wildcat skipper said. "We worked on the zone during the summer in passing league games. We have to do something different to get more pressure on the quarterback and take away that fade route."
Cornwell finished 5-of-16 passing for 51 yards against the Wildcat zone, but was just 1-of-9 for three yards against the starters.
The 56-point margin of victory was the fourth largest margin in school history and the 56 points were the sixth most in a single game.
The 56 points in the first half was the second most, falling a touchdown short of the 63 scored in the first half against Edmonson County in the 2001 playoffs.