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Epperly’s 374 passing leads CAK past Eagles

SEYMOUR — Christian Academy of Knoxville’s scoring drives are often short and intense. This remained true when CAK won 35-19 at Seymour Friday, Aug. 27.

“It was a win, but it was one of those wins when you don’t feel like you’ve won,” defensive tackle Clay Powers said. “We didn’t play like the defense we were a year ago, and I feel like we can be even better than we were a year ago. We’ve just got to be more serious, give 110 percent every time.”

Powers had 11 tackles, second only to Jacob Duncan, who had 12.

On its third play of the game, the Warriors put points on the board when quarterback Quinn Epperly (25-of-32 passing, one touchdown) connected with junior Josh Henson.

Seymour scored an answering touchdown quickly, and the game was tied, 7-7.

On the Warriors’ third possession, Epperly, who threw for 374 yards, found another capable receiver. Epperly threw left and deep to Josh Smith, who had 114 reception yards, for the TD. Reece Duncan’s second extra point was good, and CAK took the lead 14-7.

“Our receivers made great plays all night. I just put the ball in their hands and they did the rest,” Epperly said.

CAK head coach Rusty Bradley added, “I felt like their corners were jumping some of our underneath routes, our curls, our comebacks. I thought we had the ability to run by them.

“That was something we tried to do early to set the tone a little bit,” Bradley added. “I thought our guys did a good job of running good technique on the deep ball routes and obviously doing a good job catching the ball.”

When the Warriors got close to the end zone, Bradley turned to tailback Carson Pegram for the points. Pegram’s 4-yard carry put CAK up 21-7 with just 18 seconds left in the first half.

“The passing game is huge for us. Obviously we throw the ball to set up the run,” Bradley said. “Defenses are key in the pass. They’re playing the pass first, so being able to throw the ball has been keeping teams in two-high safeties, which has opened up some run-lanes for us.”

Pegram, who had two touchdowns and nine carries for 46 yards, added, “Defenses are expecting us to throw the ball, so we can run up the middle. It’s a great way to catch them off-guard.”

But when CAK threw, Pegram said his receivers “did a great job doing double moves. Quinn was all over the coverage.”

The ball was in Seymour’s hand for the majority of the second half. In fact, CAK only had the ball 1:56 for the entire third quarter.

However, Pegram’s 3-yard TD run and Epperly’s 9-yard scoring pass to Zach Mead kept the Eagles from rallying.

Christian Academy’s next game, its first District 4-AA match-up of the season, is home versus Stone Memorial. Opening kickoff is 7:30 p.m., Friday, Sept. 3.


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