Friday night Pulaski County begins a tough three-game stretch to end its 2021 regular season.
The Cougars will play host to Graham High School out of Bluefield. The G-Men are undefeated at 6-0 on the season and stand at 3-0 in the Southwest District.
After Graham, the Cougars travel to Roanoke to face the always-tough Patrick Henry Patriots before closing out the regular season hosting a much-improved Christiansburg Blue Demons team.
Graham is the top team in Region 2D according to this week’s rankings by the Virginia High School League.
Last week the G-Men walloped Virginia High, 56-23.
Tony Palmer’s G-Men have wins over Bluefield (31-6), Galax (28-0), Union (28-27), Richlands (35-0) and Tazwell (34-6).
Pulaski County stands at 4-3 on the season overall and holds a 2-2 record in the River Ridge District following last Friday’s romp over Blacksburg, 49-7.
The Cougars dominated the Bruins in that one, in just about every phase of the game.
The Cougars rolled up 478 total yards of offense, while the defense allowed the Bruins only 99.
Pulaski County recorded 20 first downs to Blacksburg’s eight.
And Cougar Chris Gallimore had his best outing statistically since taking over at QB for injured starter Cam Cooper. Gallimore was 7 of 9 passing for 180 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. He even scored once on the ground, rushing for a one yard score halfway through the second quarter.
His backup, Johnny Anderson even got into the game, going 1 of 2 for 18 yards.
Keyontae Kennedy (6 carries for 90 yards), Trevor Burton (7 for 82) and Trevor Gallimore (10 for 63) led the Cougars’ rushing attack which piled up 280 total yards against Blacksburg.
Through the air, John Lyman led the way with six receptions for 180 yards. Tanner Mace added one catch for 18 yards as the Cougars passed for 198 in the game.
Lyman caught two touchdown passes of 68 yards and one for 57 yards, both in the first quarter.
In the second quarter, Lyman rushed for a 7-yard TD.
He wasn’t done, however, as with 2:21 before halftime he returned a pass interception on defense 61 yards for his fourth score of the night.
Nathan Pratt was good on all seven PAT tries.
The Cougar defense shutout the Bruins until only 5:21 remained in the game when Blacksburg’s Parker Epperley hit Eric Metrey for a 13-yard TD pass.
In the all-important rankings this week from the Virginia High School League, Pulaski County still sits at No. 9 in Region 4D – one spot outside of playoff qualifying.
The Cougars trailed No. 8 Amherst County by less than a full point in the rankings last week. This week, Amherst has surpassed Orange County to move to No. 7.
Eighth ranked Orange has a ranking of 22.14 compared to Pulaski County’s 20.14.
Game time Friday night is at 7 p.m.
At about 6:45, Pulaski County High School will dedicate its press box to the memory of Dan Callahan, the former “Voice of the Cougars” who wrote about Cougar football for over 40 years – the last several with The Patriot.
Several of Callahan’s family will be in attendance for the occasion.
Game time weather is expected to be Partly cloudy, with a low around 44, with northwest winds around 7 mph.
By MIKE WILLIAMS, The Patriot