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Raider defense shines, CHS drops Franklin County 21-19 in season opener

Raider special teams lines up to attempt to block an extra point against Franklin County. -Photo by Holly Peterson. Thunder Radio.

The Raider defense showed up to play Friday night and the offense put together enough production for the Central High School Red Raiders to drop visiting Franklin County 21-19 Friday night at Carden-Jarrell Field in Manchester

After giving up two long touchdown passes in the second quarter of 85 and 53 yards, respectively, the Raider defense left the locker room and pitched a shutout in the second half.

Franklin County’s only score in the second half came on a interception return for a touchdown by Anthony Seno in the second half. Seno was in the right place in the right time when a Connor Shemwell passed went through the hands of CJ Anthony on a wide receiver screen, setting the stage for Seno to pluck it out of the air and walk into the end zone.

That Franklin County score cut into the Red Raider lead and made the score 21-19. But Raider linebacker Jalen Williams snuffed out the two-point conversion attempt to maintain the Raiders’ 2 point lead. That lead held through the remainder of the second half thanks to a stingy defense and a defensive stand in the last five minutes when Franklin County crossed the 50 yard line looking to take the lead.

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For the Raiders, Shemwell finished the night 8 of 15, including a 51 yard touchdown pass to Kelvin Verge in the second quarter.

Shemwell put the Raiders on the board first in the opening quarter, capping a 13 play drive with a four-yard quarterback sneak thanks to a big push from the offensive line and some help from tailback Marshal Haney.

“These boys are out there trying out their new bodies,” said CHS head coach Doug Greene, speaking about the physicality the Raiders played with Friday. “And they are doing it at the expense of someone else. And that’s a lot of fun to see.”

Haney crossed the 100 yard mark, finishing with 106 yards on 19 totes, including a 21 yard touchdown run.

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Perhaps Haney’s most important carries came late in the fourth quarter, when he stayed between the tackles and helped the Raiders melt the clock away.


*The lights cut out in the third quarter and forced an approximate 40-minute delay. Head coach Doug Greene said he used that time to “pump more water” into the players.

The Raider defense was flawless after the extra intermission.

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*The Raiders are now 1-0 on the season. They will now travel to Tullahoma to take on the Wildcats in the annual Coffee Pot Rivalry at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 29. That game broadcast can be heard on Thunder Radio: 107.9 FM, 106.7 FM, 1320 AM

Kelvin Verge (no. 2) hauls in a pass Friday night. – Photo by Holly Peterson, Thunder Radio
CHS cheerleaders honored Dennis Weaver Friday night with special bows. Weaver, the play by play voice for the Red Raiders, passed away suddenly on July 24. – Photo by Holly Peterson, Thunder Radio

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