Beavers Win Nailbiter 28-21 on Senior Night

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Caleb Jarreau, Managing Editor

Many watched Friday as Karns junior running back Desean Bishop chases the 3,000 yard mark for the season and Karns honored its seniors. Lenoir City (1-6) traveled to face Karns (5-2). Lenoir City, added to the region this year after TSSAA reclassification, has struggled all year, defeating only Stone Memorial. Desean Bishop, wearing #1 due to a ripped jersey, led the Beavers offensively. Bishop rushed for three touchdowns and passed for one, contributing to all of Karns’ scores. Bishop came into Friday leading the nation in rushing yards with 1,819. Both running back Desean Bishop and Quarterback Cassen Huffaker visited division 1 school Austin Peay Saturday, where Bishop currently holds an offer. 

 

Following senior night activities, honoring all fall athletes, Lenoir City got the opening kickoff. Lenoir City’s drive came up short when a fumbled handoff was recovered by the Beavers. Karns would make nothing of it, going 3-and-out. Jace Harvey’s punt set the Panthers up just behind midfield with 8:00 left in the first quarter. Karns safety Wesley Cooper would chase down and stop a Lenoir City reciever from scoring, but the Panthers scored the very next play. Lenoir City would go up 7-0 with 7:06 left in the first, stunning the heavily favored Beavers. Karns would go 3-and-out again, setting Lenoir City up at their own 21 after another Harvey punt. Lenoir City takes some time off the clock, but has to punt. Karns would start at their own 39 with 3:43 left in the first. Quarterback Cassen Huffaker made quick work hitting wide open Wide Reciever Walker Lockhart to put the Beavers in the red zone. Bishop beat the edge defender to dive in and tie it up 7-7 with 1:55 left in the first. It would stay 7-7 going into the second quarter.

 

Nothing would come of Lenoir City’s ensuing drive, punting and pinning Karns on their own 12. Trying to get out of their own redzone, Huffaker’s pass is intercepted by a diving Lenoir City defender, giving the Panthers the ball at midfield. Missed tackles and unfortunate penalties lead to another Panther touchdown, giving them the 14-7 lead with 7:23 left in the half. The ensuing Karns drive stalls, but Harvey’s punt is muffed and recovered by the Beavers. 3 minutes later, Bishop fakes a run and throws a “Tim Tebow Jump Pass” to hit Desmond Lockett for the touchdown. Karns ties it up 14-14 with 2:53 left. The ensuing kickoff is muffed and kicked around by Lenoir City, recovered by Beavers’ Trystan Duke. Karns would make use of the short field, scoring on a Bishop run. The lights flash as Karns goes up 21-14. The Beavers weren’t done yet, forcing a turnover on Lenoir City’s next drive on a fumble recovered by Joshua Bland. A penalty would call back a long run, leading Karns to miss a field goal and go into half up 21-14. 

 

Cooper would muff the kickoff out of halftime, recovered by Panthers’ Jordan Carroll, giving them the ball in plus field position. Lenoir City would capitalize on the turnover, scoring on an easy run, making it 21-21 with 11:00 left in the third quarter. Bishop would find “Pay dirt” for the last time of the night on the ensuing drive, putting the Beavers up 28-21 with 6:31 left in the third. Lenoir City quarterback Blake Cortez would push the panthers down the field on a long ball, but fumble on the next play. Beavers’ Trystan Duke recovers, setting up the beavers on their own goal line. A scary snap and missed opportunities lead to a Karns 3-and-out. Harvey would punt from deep in his own endzone, giving Lenoir City the ball at midfield. On the ensuing drive, Lenoir City would be forced to punt, pinning Karns on their own goal line again. A snap that rolls to Huffaker is fumbled on an attempted handoff to Bishop, giving the Panthers the ball on Karn’s goal line. After three defensive stops, the Panthers fumble and Karns recovers for a touchback. 

 

No scoring would occur in the fourth quarter. With 10:52 left, Harvey would punt to the Panthers once again. Lockhart, playing safety, goes up and snatches the ball from the Lenoir City wide reciever, leading to another turnover and Karns’ ball with 8:14 left. Bishop would march down the field, having another touchdown called back due to a personal foul. Karns would run the clock out and secure victory 28-21. 

 

Karns travels to face non-region opponent Halls Friday 10/8. Lenoir City hosts district opponent Clinton next week. The Beavers are in the hunt for a playoff spot, possibly even clinching home field advantage in the first round. The Panthers have all but been eliminated from making the postseason.