Marion Co. too much for Rockets
Forrest can look back at a 'great year': Coach
The Forrest Rockets could not stop Marion County's Mr. Football finalist Josh Henderson and it cost them a season-ending 38-10 loss at Murrey E. Holton Field in Chapel Hill Friday night.
"This team took another step this year," Forrest coach Matt Kriesky said. "They won the region for the first time since 1986 and this is only the second time we hosted a second round playoff game on this field."
"It was a great year, we won 10 ballgames, which is a great year."
The Warriors (11-1) host Tyner Academy on Friday in the 2A semifinals after Tyner upset top-ranked Boyd-Buchanan 13-7.
"I expect Marion County to be playing in Cookeville (Class 2A title game), they are a great football team in all three phases of the game," Kriesky said.
Forrest could only manage three first half points on four offensive series as the Warriors ate up the clock in their ground game to lead 17-3 at the intermission.
"I don't want to make any excuses, but I think our kids were a little nervous and worked up in the beginning," Kriesky said. "We came out in the second half with some excitement and some fire, but that is a little too late to come out against a good football team like Marion County."
Billy Clanton recovered an onsides kick at the midfield stripe to start the second half and the Rockets needed just three more plays to score as Slayton Wild ran for 46 yards on first down and two plays later, Joseph Williams scored from a yard out to make it a 17-10 ballgame.
Marion County got great field position at the Rockets' 42-yard line on the ensuing kickoff when Forrest was penalized for a fair catch interference call.
Another personal foul on the Rockets on the next play gave the Warriors the ball at the Forrest 14-yard line and four touches later, Henderson pounded the rock in from the 1-yard line, taking the air out of the Forrest comeback.
Penalties hurt the Rockets once again on their next offensive series, forcing a punt that was returned 62 yards for a touchdown by Henderson as the Warriors opened up a big 31-10 lead with 6:30 remaining in the third quarter.
Forrest's next two drives ended on a punt and a Marion County interception.
Henderson tacked on the final touchdown of the game on the first play of the fourth quarter and the Rockets' season came to a close.
"We want to get to the next level, that is what we will work for in the off-season," Kriesky said. "This senior class set the bar to get to the next level and that is where we want to be."
Mr. Football finalist
Forrest's Boone Sweeney, who was double teamed the entire night came up with six tackles in the game.
Sweeny was named as one of the two finalists for the Class 2A Mr. Football Lineman of the Year on Monday, along with Jake Harden from Boyd Buchanan.
The Tennessee Titans Mr. Football Awards will be presented to the top 16 backs and linemen in eight classifications of the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association on Monday, November 30, 2015, at Nissan Stadium in Nashville.
Mike Keith, play-by-play voice of the Tennessee Titans, will emcee the awards presentation. A live video stream of the awards will be provided at www.titansonline.com.
Marion County 7 10 14 7-38
Forrest 3 0 7 0-10
M -- Logan Walters 1 run (Christian Stephens kick), 6:17.
F -- Javier Rios 23 field goal, 3:26.
M -- Josh Henderson 1 run (Stephens kick), 8:53.
M -- Stephens 37 field goal, 0:43.
F -- Joseph Williams 1 run (Rios kick), 10:43.
M -- Walters 1 run (Stevens kick), 9:11.
M -- Henderson 61 punt return (Stevens kick), 6:30.
M -- Walters 3 run (Stevens kick), 9:10.
Marion County 281, Forrest 189.
Marion County 268, Forrest 164.
Marion County 13, Forrest 25.
Rushing-Clay Watson 6-65, Slayton Wild 7-53, Joseph Williams 6-27-TD, David Andrews 4-14, Scrappy Osborne 2-5, Troy Turner 1-0.
Passing-David Andrews 3-9-25 (INT), Slayton Wild 0-1 (INT).
Receiving-Jesse Pruitt 1-17, Payton Sisk 1-4, Joseph Williams 1-4.
Turnovers-Marion County 1, Forrest 2.
Fumbles recovered by-Payton Sisk.