Saturday, November 06, 1999

Holmes 41, Franklin Co. 25

Bulldogs set 2nd-round date with Dixie

Enquirer contributor

        FRANKFORT — Friday was the first time Holmes coach John Vander Meer had been to Franklin County High School since he was an assistant coach in 1987.

        The Bulldogs made Vander Meer's visit to Benny Watkins Field — for a Class AAA first-round playoff game — an enjoyable one. Senior tailback Eddie Bane scored three times, and senior receiver Jerry Weaver scored twice in Holmes' 41-25 victory.

        The Bulldogs travel to Dixie Heights for a second-round game next Friday. The Colonels defeated Bourbon County 43-6.

        Bane scored on runs of 6 and 29 yards, and he returned a fumble 93 yards for a third TD. Weaver caught a 15-yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Brian Ferguson and took an interception 50 yards for the other score.

        Vander Meer preferred to talk about the Holmes defense that forced six Franklin County turnovers. He said a talk after a 63-0 district loss to Highlands two weeks ago was the key.

        “I challenged the kids,” Vander Meer said. “They've worked extremely hard. I'm proud of them.”

        Bane, Weaver and Ferguson have been the core of the Holmes offense all year, and that was the case in Friday's first half, too.

        Start with the Bulldogs' opening drive. Ferguson hit Weaver for a 24-yard pass, senior Marco Hallman for a 15-yarder and Weaver for a 9-yarder. Bane got the final 6 yards for the TD with 8:06 left in the first quarter.

        Unfortunately for Holmes, the first of six Bulldogs fumbles led to Franklin County's first touchdown. A 35-yard run by Bane resulted in a fumble, and the Flyers' Scott Ashburn recovered at the County 14.

        Franklin County junior Gordon Miles took care of the rest — an 86-yard run to tie the game at 7-7 with 5:30 left in the first quarter. He finished with 21 carries for 211 yards.

        Bane and Ferguson made up for that on the next series. On a third-and-24 at the Franklin County 29, the Flyers followed Ferguson as he rolled right. Bane, however, was still on the left side of the field, and Ferguson found him for the 29-yard TD and a 14-7 lead with 1:46 left in the quarter.

        “I had to make it up,” Bane said, referring to his fumble. “I let my team down.”

        A fumble led to the Flyers' next points. Senior linebacker Nick Yett recovered Holmes senior quarterback Antwan Curry's bobble, and sophomore quarterback Emil Baltic hit senior Chris Green with a 7-yard TD two plays later.

        For the rest of the half, the Holmes defense dominated.

        Sophomore linebacker James Jackson blocked Baltic's extra point attempt to preserve a 14-13 lead with 3:11 left, and after Franklin County's defense held, Weaver picked Baltic and ran untouched down the left side with 1:16 to go.

        “I didn't see it,” Weaver said of the interception. “It just fell into my hands. I saw it tipped.”

        A 21-second span late in the third quarter clinched Holmes' win.

        Weaver returned a Baltic punt 69 yards to the Franklin County 10, and Ferguson's 10-yard run the next play put Holmes ahead, 27-13 with 2:35 remaining.

        Holmes ....... 14  6  14   7—41

        Franklin Co. ....... 7  6   0  12—25

        H—Bane 6 run (Hughes kick)

        FC—Miles 86 run (Baltic kick)

        H—Bane 29 pass from Ferguson (Hughes kick)

        FC—Green 7 pass from Baltic (kick failed)

        H—Weaver 50 interception return (kick failed)

        H—Ferguson 10 run (Hughes kick)

        H—Weaver 15 pass from Ferguson (Hughes kick)

        H—Bane 93 fumble recovery (Hughes kick)

        FC—Ashburn 1 run (pass failed)

        FC—Moore 58 fumble recovery (run failed)

        Records: H 8-3, FC 9-2.


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