Of all the playoff football games over the weekend, none stood out more than the matchup between Hebron (Ky.) Conner High and Franklin County (Ky.) High. Sure, plenty of other games were closer, but none could stand up to the stats compiled in Conner's momentous 84-48 victory.
Conner ran for a state-record 745 yards en route to its 84-point outburst. Incredibly, Franklin County accumulated 395 yards in its loss. Put those numbers together, and the two teams ran for 1,140 yards on the ground.
That's right: One game, more than 1,000 rushing yards. It's an astounding number which, quite predictably, was the aggregate result of a number of notable individual performances. As reported by the Kentucky Post and Lexington Herald-Leader, Conner running back Jesse McKeehan ran for 251 yards and three scores, his teammate Drew Baker ran for 241 yards and two touchdowns and fellow Cougar Cameron Fogle also ran for 162 yards and three TDs. Running back Ryan Timmons ran for 264 yards for Franklin County in the loss.
"We just kept running for touchdowns." Conner football coach James Trosper told the Kentucky Post. "It was like Forest Gump. We just kept running and running. …
"Our offensive and defensive lines played a great game. When you set a state record, the guys are running through big holes and they were opening them up all night."
The Cougars' running attack stunned Franklin County, which entered the game as an undefeated favorite at 11-0. Instead of advancing to the third round as expected, the Flyers witnessed the best rushing performance in state history, topping a 710-yard game from Henderson County (Ky.) High in 1997.
Yet Franklin County played a key role in the record-setting performance, too, putting up an impressive 40-point first half -- Conner led only 42-40 at halftime -- to force Conner to keep running, and scoring, at its record pace.
"We got up on them a couple of touchdowns and they started throwing it and we got a couple of turnovers," Trosper told the Post. "We switched to a four-man front in the second half and it forced them to do some things they didn't want to do."