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HVA falls to rival Karns, but hopes high for 2010

When Hardin Valley Academy’s first season of varsity football was officially over, the final Hawks player to leave the field stopped one step shy of doing so.

He leaned over and tapped his helmet a couple of times.

Someone thought it signified the number of plays keeping HVA from ending its first varsity football season on a winning note.

In the end, Karns did just enough to claim a 12-7 victory in a District 3-AAA game at HVA featuring an overflow crowd, pre-game fireworks and new dark blue jerseys.

“I loved that atmosphere,” head coach Wes Jones said. “Now that’s what high school football is all about.”

Although the Hawks did not win again after a 7-0 upset at Carter in August, the program has made significant strides.

“... I am so proud of the effort and commitment that has taken this program to where it is today,” Jones said. “It’s true of our players and this community. We have a long way to go, but we are going to get there and we are going to get there the right way.”

Hardin Valley finishes 1-8 and 0-7. One loss was erased after the TSSAA ordered Central to “vacate” a victory for using an ineligible player.

Ricardo Winston finished his senior season rushing for 83 yards on 14 carries, including a 3-yard run that enabled the Hawks to pull even at 6-6.

Ryan Bataille’s PAT with six minutes remaining in the second quarter gave Hardin Valley its first lead since August.

Although HVA fell behind in the final minute of the first half, Del Fercho recovered a fumble after the second-half kick.

Dorian Eskridge gained seven of his 58 yards, but the drive stalled and Hardin Valley turned the ball over on downs.

The next possession ended with a fumble at the Karns 39, and the only other Hawks possession of the second half ended at the Karns 24 with just over three minutes remaining.

Josh Krebs and Zach Clevenger had excellent games defensively and Thomas Echols played well, too.

Karns transfer Gary Dees left the game with a shoulder injury and then returned.

Trey Bird had a sack and caught a 20-yard pass. Lee Warren and Lance Tuck had big hits.

Junior quarterback Jake Bishop was 5-of-12 for 56 yards He finished the season with 978 yards passing.

“To get out here and compete in 6A football — and to come as far as they have — is something to be proud about,” Jones said. “This program has come a long way. ... I believe we are going to turn things around.”


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