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Ground game lifts Edinburgh to big win

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On a very warm night, the red-hot Edinburgh Lancers put up 55 points in the first half en route to a 62-8 season-opening high school football victory against visiting Manual on Friday.

With an unstoppable ground game, led by senior Kevin Johnson, the Lancers tallied 29 points in the opening quarter, scoring on each of their first five possessions.

Behind a dominating performance by the Lancers’ offensive line, Johnson broke for touchdown runs of 9, 7 and 44 yards.

The Lancers took advantage of two bad snaps from center and recovered two first-half fumbles to cash in for a safety and two touchdowns.

By halftime, Edinburgh coach Bill Unsworth had emptied his bench.

With Johnson on the sideline, Lancers senior Doug Scrogham and sophomore Zach Smiley filled in efficiently, each with a touchdown in the second quarter.

Also scoring a touchdown was senior Ellliott Parmer on a 55-yard-touchdown pass, and junior Steven Bailey scored on a 20-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Bobby Simpson.

“With the nine quality seniors we have this year, they’ve been through the wars, and they know how to get ready,” Unsworth said. “We’ve run the same offense and the same defense for four years now, so we expect them to perform the way they did.”

By scoring early, the Lancers were in control from start to finish.

“It got to the point where we thought, let’s see if we can throw the ball this way or that way and give the ball to Steven (Bailey) or give the ball to Zach (Smiley),” Unsworth said.

“It was one of those things when we’re running the ball and they can’t stop us, so we just kept running the ball.”

With a running clock in the second half, Edinburgh tacked on only one more score — a 23-yard touchdown run by Smiley.

For the game, Johnson led the way with three touchdowns on six carries for 90 yards. Smiley was next with two touchdowns, rushing for 60 yards on six carries.

The Lancers rushed for 362 yards to go with 117 passing yards for a total of 479 yards.

Simpson passed for two touchdowns, completing 5 for 8 for 117 yards.

The lone touchdown by the Redskins (0-1) came in the final minute of play when junior Taj Moore ran it in for a 13-yard touchdown.

The Lancers (1-0) travel to North Decatur on Friday.

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