Cougars travel to Roanoke to face Patrick Henry

Cougars travel to Roanoke to face Patrick Henry
Pulaski County defenders crunch this Graham running back in last Friday’s action. (Antonio Nottingham/The Patriot)

Pulaski County will try to bounce back into the win column this Friday when they travel to Group 5A Patrick Henry of Roanoke.

The Cougars are coming off a tough 58-18 defeat at the hands of the Graham G-Men last week.

The Cougars now stand at 4-4 on the season and 2-2 in the River Ridge District with two regular season games remaining. They close out the regular season next Friday when they host Christiansburg.

Patrick Henry is currently 6-2 overall with wins over Blacksburg (42-0), Hidden Valley (44-7) and Cave Spring (35-0) in the River Ridge. Three more wins came out of district against Albemarle (30-13), William Fleming (32-28) and Northside (29-22).

The Patriots have been beaten twice – by Brookville in their season-opener, 35-15 and last week by Christiansburg, 37-14.

Leading the Patriots are sophomore quarterback Joey Beasley who tossed a 52-yard touchdown pass last week against Christiansburg to junior wide receiver Jahzae Kimbrough.

Taeshaun Webb is another dangerous Patriot to keep an eye on. The senior kick returner brought back a Blue Demon kickoff last week 91 yards for PH’s first score.

After last week’s loss to Graham, the Cougars remain in ninth place in Region 4D’s playoff race. Pulaski County currently is just over one full point in the Virginia High School League’s football rating system.

Only the top eight schools in each region qualify for the playoffs that start in two weeks.

The Cougars (20.25) currently trail Amherst County (21.43). Amherst currently is 4-3 overall and 3-2 in the Seminole District.

A win Friday night looks vital for the Cougars if they are to make this season’s playoffs.

Last week against Graham, Pulaski County surrendered 407 yards of offense to the G-Men who held a 16-6 lead after the first quarter.

Pulaski County’s only score was a 42-yard pass from Chris Gallimore to John Lyman.  The 2-point conversion failed.

The Cougars scored again just after the start of the second quarter when Travis Burton broke free on a 45-yard scamper. Again the two-point try failed and Graham led at the time, 16-12.

The rest of the first half and into the third quarter was all Graham as they racked up 21 straight points before Pulaski County would light up the scoreboard once again when Gallimore hit Lyman on a 7-yard TD strike. The two-point try again failed, and the Cougars trailed 37-18.

Graham tacked on three more scores before the game ended.

Burton, Lyman and Keyontae Kennedy led the offense for Pulaski County. Burton ended the game with 10 rushes for 96 yards. Lyman had 82 yards receiving on 6 receptions. Kennedy added 7 yards on the ground on 7 tries, but hauled in four passes for 92 yards.

Gallimore had a decent outing, going 13 of 20 through the air for 181 yards and no interceptions and two TDs.

Game time Friday night in Roanoke is 7 p.m.

By MIKE WILLIAMS, The Patriot