NORTH VOLLEYBALL SUPER REGIONAL: Sand Rock's season ends in heartbreaking loss to third-ranked Lexington

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

HUNTSVILLE – The Sand Rock Lady Wildcats took third-ranked Lexington the distance in the Class 3A North Volleyball Super Regional in Huntsville on Saturday, but the Lady Wildcats’ season came to an end with a 26-24, 28-26, 15-25, 24-26, 13-15 loss.

No. 10 Sand Rock’s season comes to a close at 30-17.

“We pulled out the first two games and could not find the points to win just one more. We played so well and so hard,” Sand Rock coach Lisa Bates said. “I was very proud of our effort and our play today.  The girls did an awesome job of blocking and slowing the ball down so we could dig it up. We were really out-sized, but we made up for it with heart today. They really gave it their all up until the end. This was the best I have seen us play all year.”

Sabryn Chandler led the Lady Wildcats with 23 kills, 25 digs, four aces and three blocks. Madison McCullough contributed 21 kills, 21 digs and three blocks. Courtney Williams added 25 assists and three aces. Audrey Richardson had 22 assists.

Madison Allen managed 26 digs and a pair of aces. Savannah Blackwell posted four blocks and three kills Haylie Pruitt had four blocks and four kills. August Gilliland finished with two kills and two blocks.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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NORTH VOLLEYBALL SUPER REGIONAL: Top-ranked Decatur Heritage dashes Spring Garden's hopes of return trip to state

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

HUNTSVILLE – They say you have to go through the best to be the best.

That’s exactly what the Spring Garden Lady Panthers were faced with on Saturday morning in the Class 1A North Volleyball Super Regional in Huntsville against top-ranked Decatur Heritage.

Despite a strong fight by fourth-ranked Spring Garden, the Lady Panthers ultimately fell in four games 12-25, 25-23, 19-25, 14-25.

Madison Sides led the Lady Panthers (34-19) with 17 digs, nine kills and two aces. Rachel Morris managed 13 kills and six blocks. Hayley Williams had 16 digs and three kills. Abbie Porter posted 19 digs. AJ Broome posted 23 assists and a pair of blocks. Alex Robertson finished with an ace and two blocks.

In their win over Belgreen on Friday morning, Sides delivered 21 kills, 10 digs and six aces. Morris added 11 kills. Porter contributed 18 digs. Williams collected six kills, five digs and a pair of aces. Broome finished with 38 assists.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

HUNTSVILLE – Cedar Bluff’s volleyball season came to an end Saturday morning with a 25-7, 25-7, 25-5 loss to third-ranked Donoho in the Class 1A North Super Regional. The Lady Tigers finished the year at 16-25.

Third-ranked Donoho (42-8) advances to the tournament semifinals at 3 p.m. Saturday in the Von Braun Center. The Lady Falcons also clinch a spot in next week’s state tournament in Birmingham.

More updates as they become available.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Cedar Bluff reaches milestone with victory over Gaylesville

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CEDAR BLUFF – The history of Cedar Bluff’s football program dates all the way back to 1930.

In that time, there’s been 15 area/region championships won, including a Class 1A, Region 7 title this season. There has also been three state championships awarded to the Tigers by The Birmingham News (1959, 1961, 1962), and a state runner-up in 2006.

On Friday night, the Cedar Bluff faithful celebrated the program’s 85th anniversary by honoring all former football players and coaches at halftime of the Tigers’ 80th meeting with longtime rival Gaylesville.

It was only fitting that Friday’s game also had an added special significance.

The Tigers won their 500th football game in school history with a 46-20 win over the Trojans. Their overall record now stands at 500-301-21.

“To have this celebration at home was real special,” Cedar Bluff coach and 1995 graduate Jonathan McWhorter said. “There’s a lot of pride here with all our sports programs, especially our football program. It’s something we could celebrate with everybody who’s had anything to do with all 500 wins. It was just a special night to honor all those people.

“We talk about each other as a family – our community and our school – and we really think of each other that way. Anytime former players talk to me about the team, it’s how are we looking? How are we going to be this year? It’s not ya’ll or the team. We talk in terms of us and we. We know we’re representing a lot of people every time we get on this field, and we don’t take that lightly. We’re very honored to be able to do that.”

The Trojans (2-7, 2-4) had plans to spoil the evening for the home crowd. They used a ball control game plan to keep second-ranked Cedar Bluff’s offense off the field.

But it was the Tiger defense that helped thwart those plans in the first half.

The Trojans marched all the way down to the Tiger 28 on their first possession of the game, but a fumble by senior fullback Brandon Barnes was scooped up by sophomore defensive back Isaiha Jones. Jones rambled 77 yards for a touchdown to give the Tigers (9-0, 6-0) a 6-0 lead.

“I’ve been looking for picks all season, but that was my first recovery,” Jones said. “I saw it roll out and I picked it up. It just felt good to score for our team.”

The Tiger defense forced the Trojans in a three-and-out on their next possession, and the offense capitalized on a 3-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Josh Decker to senior receiver DJ Chapman. The Trojans blocked Derick Pearsey’s extra point, keeping the score at 12-0.

On the third play of Gaylesville’s next possession, junior quarterback Austin Slayton was picked off by sophomore defensive back Davion Fife, setting the offense up again with a short field. Twelve plays later, Decker delivered a 1-yard touchdown run for an 18-0 advantage.

“Our defense has done great all year,” McWhorter said. “We really stressed this week that we’ve got to have some turnovers, and we’ve got to take advantage of those turnovers. I’m real proud of our defense. I thought we played well.”

Gaylesville got back to controlling the ball, and the clock, with a 13-play, 58-yard drive on its next possession. The end result was Barnes rolling into the end zone from nine yards. Senior Jonathan Bradley’s pass on the 2-point conversion missed the mark, but the Trojans were back in the game, trailing 18-6.

After forcing Cedar Bluff to punt, Gaylesville’s offense scored again on a 28-yard Bradley-to-Slayton connection. Barnes booted the extra point, and with just 22 ticks on the clock in the first half, Gaylesville had cut the Tiger lead to 18-13.

“These high-paced offenses, if you can control the clock and make them sweat it out, you can play with them,” Gaylesville coach Kyle Garmon said. “I’ve said for years there’s two ways to beat them. You’ve either got to control the clock, which is very hard to do because they’re so big and physical and fast, or you can try to outscore them. It worked for a half, but then it was done (in the second half).”

As Garmon said, the Tigers made the necessary adjustments at the break and their offense got back to its quick-strike scoring ways.

It took freshman running back Ivory Starr just three carries on the Tigers’ opening possession in the third quarter to score his first touchdown of the night. He scooted 69 yards for this one. Decker added the 2-point conversion rush, and just like that, the Tigers had taken a 26-13 lead.

The Tiger ‘D’ forced another Trojan punt, and Starr scored again, this time from 43 yards. Senior running back Haylan Bailey rushed in for the 2-point conversion, giving Cedar Bluff a 34-13 advantage.

Slayton fumbled the ensuing kickoff, which fell into the arms of Jones. One play after the turnover, Starr dashed 42 yards for his third touchdown of the quarter. Decker missed on the 2-point pass, but the Tigers were in control at 40-13 with 5:10 left in the third quarter.

Starr’s 42-yard touchdown run was his final carry of the night. He finished with 275 yards (206 in the third quarter) on 14 carries with three scores.

“When I’m not doing so well, my teammates pick me up to go harder, and that’s what I did in the second half,” Starr said. “I started getting off on the right blocks and getting to the right side. That’s what helped me in the second half.”

Garmon complimented Starr on his big third quarter, but he was impressed with how well the Tigers blocked in the trenches.

“In years past, you look at these Cedar Bluff teams and say they’ve got good backs, they’ve got good wideouts, they’ve got good quarterbacks, but they’re kind of missing a lineman or two. This Cedar Bluff team is not missing anybody,” Garmon said. “I don’t know if they’ve got one offensive lineman who is just dominant and powerful, but as a group, this is the best five offensive linemen I’ve seen for them. They do well on their fits and they do well staying on their blocks. When you’ve got a back like (Starr), you don’t have to block real long for it to be a good block.”

Decker finished off the third quarter with a 57-yard touchdown toss to Jones. He completed 4-of-7 pass attempts for 77 yards and two touchdowns.

Gaylesville junior running back Derek Hill had a 2-yard touchdown run with 5:21 remaining in the game for the final. Hill and Barnes both rushed for 93 yards and a touchdown apiece to lead the Trojans.

Gaylesville closes out its season at Spring Garden on Friday. Cedar Bluff will host Class 3A Sand Rock on Thursday.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Spring Garden brother-sister duo make potential history

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GADSDEN – Spring Garden junior Kaitlyn Rogers keeps climbing the ladder in what has been an historic high school football career.

She started out as ball girl in the third grade for the Panther peewee teams. She moved up to manager on the varsity team in the sixth grade, with Gatorade becoming “Katerade” for the Panther football players.

Head coach Jason Howard promoted her to kicking extra points for the Panthers last season – the first female to do so in the school’s history.

But on Friday night at Class 1A, Region 7 rival Coosa Christian in Gadsden, her dream of scoring a touchdown finally became a reality.

With 4:01 left in the fourth quarter, behind the block of her brother – senior lineman Ethan Rogers – Kaitlyn Rogers found the end zone on a 6-yard run for Spring Garden’s final touchdown in a 50-6 victory.

Earlier in the game, Ethan Rogers scored on a 1-yard touchdown run, potentially making the brother-sister duo the first ever to score touchdowns in the same game.

“I’m real thankful for our coaches giving me the opportunities I’ve had,” Kaitlyn Rogers said. “They knew I was disappointed on the fake extra point pass (after Spring Garden’s first touchdown of the game), but they had a play called “special” made just for me to run. I ran up the middle behind the guys and scored. I was so proud. They were all excited for me. They picked me up and gave me high-fives. When I got to the sideline, Coach Howard gave me a big hug. They were all proud of me.”

Kaitlyn Rogers is not the first girl player to score a touchdown in a high school game in Alabama. Former Pickens Academy football players Emily Alexander and Charli Jones both scored in the same game against Kingwood Christian back in Oct. 2003.

Howard said he’s “tickled” for Kaitlyn Rogers’s rare feat.

“It was a special set we designed just for her if we got close (to the end zone),” Howard said. “She’s put in a lot of effort the past couple of years. She’s played on a broken foot, and she’s really worked hard. It never dawned on me about a brother-sister (duo) scoring in the same game. That might be the first time ever.”

Brother Ethan is proud of his little sister as well.

“Knowing this was something she really wanted, it made me real proud of her,” Ethan Rogers said. “Not only did she want that, but our whole team wanted it too. She’s been our ball girl, our manager, and that love, that liking for her has grown as she has gotten to play.”

Ethan and Kaitlyn Rogers are just two of five Rogers family members on Spring Garden’s varsity football team. There’s also an adopted brother, junior receiver/defensive back Joe Rogers, along with cousins James and Wesley Rogers.

It was Wesley Rogers’s 46-yard reception that set up Kaitlyn Rogers’s memorable touchdown.

“Wesley caught a great pass, and that gave me the opportunity to finish the score,” Kaitlyn Rogers said.

Junior quarterback Ben Ivey got the Panthers (6-3, 5-1) going with a 2-yard touchdown run just 42 seconds into the game. Kaitlyn Rogers’s 2-point conversion pass was knocked down, keeping the score at 6-0.

Junior tailback Dakota Lambert scored Spring Garden’s second touchdown on a 34-yard run. Kaitlyn Rogers’s extra point was no good, but the Panthers were up by two scores at 12-0 with 8:23 left in the first quarter.

Lambert added an 87-yard touchdown run, and junior fullback Quintin Downey accounted for Spring Garden’s next score on a 73-yard run to close out the first quarter, which the Panthers led 24-0.

Lambert and Downey both had just two carries in the game, as Spring Garden pulled its starters after just eight snaps. They finished with 121 and 114 yards respectively. Lambert also had a 65-yard reception.

Ethan Rogers opened the second-quarter scoring for the Panthers on his 1-yard run 56 seconds into the quarter. Kaitlyn Rogers was successful on the extra point to give the Panthers a 31-0 advantage.

Senior Colton Livingston later added a 33-yard touchdown run for a 37-0 Panther lead. He finished with 60 yards on just four carries.

Coosa Christian (0-9) got on the scoreboard on Caiden Lipscomb’s 17-yard touchdown pass to Wesley Grizzard with 2:24 remaining in the first half.

Spring Garden senior Chase Jennings had the only score of the third quarter – a 60-yard touchdown run. Kaitlyn Rogers’s extra point made the score 44-6. Her touchdown run in the fourth quarter capped the scoring.

Spring Garden closes out its regular season at home against Gaylesville next Friday.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Sand Rock closes out Class 3A, Region 7 play with blowout of Pisgah

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

SAND ROCK – In their last region matchup of the football season, the Sand Rock Wildcats played host to Pisgah Friday night and turned in a dominating performance from start to finish.

The Wildcats trounced the Eagles 41-7 on senior night. Fittingly, one of those seniors made a huge impact for his team.

With Pisgah receiving the opening kickoff, the Eagles (4-5, 3-4) marched into Wildcat territory, only to be forced into a fourth-and-long situation. The Eagles opted to go for it, but Joel Brock made them pay.

Eagle quarterback Austin Smothers rolled out to the sideline and fired a pass to his would-be receiver, but Brock stepped into the route for the interception and dashed 70 yards to the end zone giving Sand Rock (6-3, 4-3) a 7-0 lead.

Brock collected his second interception of the night later in the quarter.

Defense was not the only side of the ball that Brock would make his presence felt. He caught two touchdown passes and finished with 90 receiving yards, all from passes by fellow senior Caleb Kasinger.

“He’s been solid for us all year,” Wildcat coach Steven Chesnut said of Brock. “He’s a big target on offense, and we want him at corner because you have to throw it perfectly to get it over a guy his size. He had a really good night.”

Another Wildcat senior made an impact with just a minute left in the first quarter. Nate Mitchell scooped up a muffed punt and scored to put the Wildcats ahead 20-0.

Mitchell also led Sand Rock’s defense with 10 tackles, including four for lost yardage.

On the first play of the Eagles’ next drive, running back Jacob Gamble would bust through the line and scamper 72 yards for Pisgah’s lone score of the night, followed by a successful PAT from Smothers.

Gamble finished with 184 total yards on the night.

Sand Rock would finish its first half scoring with a 14-yard touchdown rush from tailback Bradon Carver.

After breaking free down the sideline, Kasinger found Brock for a 55-yard touchdown pass, widening the gap for the Wildcats to 34-7 in the second half. Kasinger would finish 8-for-13 with 166 yards through the air. Brock caught three passes for 100 yards and twio scores.

Senior running back Alex McMahan would cap the night’s scoring with a 2-yard touchdown rush late in the third quarter, making the final score 41-7.

Sand Rock will travel to play its final game of the season against the Cedar Bluff Tigers on Friday.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Cherokee County wallops White Plains

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

WHITE PLAINS – The Cherokee County Warriors scored touchdowns on five of their first six plays Friday night in a 45-6 rout of Class 4A, Region 6 rival White Plains.

Sophomore quarterback Tyren Dupree got the Warriors (6-3, 5-3) going quickly with touchdown tosses of 50 and 16 yards to junior receivers Quartez Henderson and Justin McKnight. James Sewell added both extra points for a 14-0 lead.

Junior running back Brendan Bray added a 22-yard touchdown run, followed by junior tailback Jacob Graves’s 19-yard run for a 28-0 advantage.

McKnight closed out the first quarter with his 33-yard scoring run, giving the Warriors a comfortable 35-0 lead.

Sewell added a 27-yard field goal in the fourth quarter to increase Cherokee County’s lead to 38-0. White Plains (1-8, 0-7) prevented the shutout on Gage Whiteside’s 1-yard touchdown run. The extra point was no good.

Warrior freshman running back Ka’Von Stubbs capped the game’s scoring with his 9-yard touchdown run.

Dupree completed both his pass attempts for 66 yards and two touchdowns. Backup quarterback Caden Hubbard was 4-of-5 for 89 yards.

Henderson and Chris Roden both had an interception on defense for the Warriors.

Cherokee County closes out the regular season at Class 5A Alexandria on Friday.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Piedmont finishes with undefeated mark in Class 3A, Region 6

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

WEAVER – Darnell Jackson rushed for 115 yards and one touchdown and threw a touchdown pass in the third quarter as Piedmont completed an undefeated run through Class 3A, Region 6 with a 35-14 victory over Weaver.

Both teams have qualified for the Class 3A playoffs, with the Bulldogs (8-1, 7-0) the No. 1 seed.

Jackson scored on a 13-yard run in the first quarter. He threw an 18-yard pass to Wil Mitchell in the third quarter that closed the scoring. He also had a punt return for a touchdown called back by a penalty.

Piedmont got off to an explosive start with Bayley Blanchard returning the opening kickoff 89 yards for a touchdown, but the Bulldogs couldn’t shake their hosts until quarterback Taylor Hayes broke off a 44-yard touchdown run with 1:29 left in the first half for a 28-14 lead.

Hayes rushed for 140 yards on 14 carries. The Bulldogs rushed for 367 yards as a team.

Delo Forbes scored both touchdowns for Weaver (4-5, 4-3) – on a 70-yard pass from Dalton Hamby in the first quarter and a 70-yard run in the second.

Piedmont hosts Oneonta on Friday.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Fyffe pounds Collinsville, 49-14

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

COLLINSVILLE – Class 2A, No. 5 Fyffe traveled to Collinsville and rolled to a 49-14 win in Region 7 football action on Friday.

Collinsville (5-4, 3-3) kept things close early, trailing only by a touchdown in the first quarter.

However, the Panthers would go on to have three turnovers that Fyffe (8-1, 5-1) converted into touchdowns.

“I thought we played hard, but we made mistakes,” Collinsville coach Ernie Willingham said. “We had two fumbles they turned into touchdowns, and then they ran a lateral back for a touchdown. Without those fumbles, we may have only been down one score at the half.”

Collinsville put the first points on the board at the 7:57 mark of the first quarter when Jon Barkley hauled in a 37-yard touchdown pass from Dominick Brockitt. Elija Avila kicked the point after for a 7-0 lead.

Fyffe responded at 4:14 with a Dilan Kilpatrick 20-yard touchdown run. Andrew Dunston added the kick to tie the game at 7.

Kilpatrick scored again with 11 seconds left in the quarter on a 3-yard run. Dunston make the kick for a 14-7 lead.

After that, Fyffe took over the game. The Red Devils scored 21 points in the second quarter on a 7-yard run from Kilpatrick, a 70-yard fumble recovery for a touchdown by Christopher Collins and Collins also hauled in a 7-yard touchdown pass from Seth Benefield.

Fyffe scored two more times in the second half, with one of those scores coming on a 10-yard run from Tyler Ashley.

Collinsville added a 1-yard touchdown pass to from Keaton Kilgro to Nicholas Brockitt.

“I thought both teams played well,” Fyffe coach Paul Benefield said. “I thought Collinsville gave us fits at times. I’m proud to get a win and I thought our players played hard, but we have to get ready for Plainview next week.”

Kilpatrick collected 138 yards on 19 carries and three touchdowns for the Red Devils. Payton Anderson rushed six times for 50 yards.

Kilgro was 12-of-23 passing for 126-yards and three touchdowns for Collinsville, which closes out its regular season on Thursday at home against Valley Head.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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Things to do in Cherokee County for the weekend of Saturday, Oct. 24 and Sunday, Oct. 25

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

Saturday, Oct. 24

“Plant Sale/ Yard Sale/Bake Sale” by the Cherokee Rose Garden Club will be in the Cedar Bluff Town Park Saturday, from 8am till noon.

The Centre Middle School Choccoloco Tip Off Classic will begin at the Gadsden State Community College-Cherokee Arena. Saturday games begin at 9 a.m.

The Turkeytown Memorial sponsored by Turkeytown Valley sons of Confederate Veterans Camp 1512 will be held at 10 a.m. on Old Highway 411 below Gaston School.

In high school volleyball action, the North Super Regional Touranment will be played at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville, TBD.

Centre First Baptist Church is sponsoring a Fall Festival from 4 p.m. until 6 p.m. at the ROC.

Sunday, Oct. 25.

The Centre First Baptist Church contemporary worship service, “Impact” begins at 8:30 a.m.

The Edge, a contemporary worship service that welcomes each person as he or she is and challenges us all to grow together in our faith in Jesus Christ, meets at 8:45 a.m. at Centre First United Methodist Church.

DANIEL CHAPEL Chapel Church will have a singing Sunday night, Oct. 25, beginning at 6 p.m. Special singers will be Clear Vision.

A Centre First Baptist Church Tween Fall Fest (for fourth through sixth grade boys and girls) will be held from 3:45 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. outside the home of Len and Karen Hogan, Northwood Estates, near the old Centre Airport (14 Brannon Court). Family invited and bring a friend! Parents asked to bring chips, dip, desserts, or drinks. Bring lawn chairs. Join us for games, hayride, hotdogs, s’mores and more! Also “Pie in the Face” donation to raise money for church members in need!

Visit the beautiful Rock Village, home of some of the best hiking and rock climbing throughout the world. Enjoy fresh air and beautiful scenery. Go to the intersection of U.S. Highway 411 and Highway 68 in Leesburg, turn right, turn left on Cherokee County 36, to the intersection of County Road 36 and County Road 70, turn left and follow the signs.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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