CHICKAMAUGA, Ga. -- Mike Ramsey already handles two starting positions for the Walker Wolverines, but he might just add a part-time gig in the backfield following Friday night's 21-7 Region 6-A win at Gordon Lee.
The 6-foot-3, 240-pound offensive and defensive lineman secured the win in the sloppy game by stripping a Gordon Lee ball carrier, recovering the fumble and dashing 75 yards for a touchdown that increased a precarious seven-point lead to the final margin. Along the way the junior shook off two would-be tacklers, made a spin move and outraced several defenders to the end zone.
"I saw a great opportunity and I kept going for it and finally got it," Ramsey said of the strip with just 5:34 remaining in the game. "I saw all green light and went for the end zone. The coaches talked about me running the ball once in preseason, but it never happened."
The turnover was one of seven for the Trojans (1-2, 0-1), who lost six fumbles, including a bad snap on a punt attempt that resulted in a Walker 11-yard drive and a 14-7 lead midway through the third quarter.
Gordon Lee's first fumble came on its first play and led to a 27-yard Wolverines drive that resulted in a fourth-down 2-yard touchdown pass when Sam Yarborough scrambled all the way back to his 20-yard line before heaving the pass into the end zone to Evan Kasion.
It was the beginning of a forgettable night for Kevin McElhaney's Trojans.
"When you don't execute like you're capable of executing and give the ball up as many times as we did tonight, there's relatively little chance you can win," McElhaney said. "The defense, I thought, played well enough to win the game. Their running back rushed for 319 last week and we did a good job on him tonight. But we gave up a Hail Mary type of thing in the first half with their quarterback running for his life.
"I mean, what can you do when you make that many mistakes?"
The Gordon Lee defense, led by linebacker Bryce Bailey, held Walker's Kasion to 23 yards on 21 carries and limited the Wolverines to 136 total yards for the game. And despite all the miscues, the Trojans were in the game following Zack Cobb's 76-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in the third quarter.
Gordon Lee twice had the ball in Walker territory after that score, losing the first drive on downs at the 39 and the second one on Ramsey's highlight-reel strip-and-score. The Walker defensive accolades were many, including Kasion's two fumble recoveries and an interception and two fumble recoveries for Collin Mitchell.
"I'm just proud of my boys for playing so hard," Ramsey said of the defense. "This is a huge win for us. It starts the region play well for us. We're big on defense and we just pursue and punish -- it's a motto we live by."
Klay Durham paced the Gordon Lee attack with 96 tough yards on 21 carries.
Lindsey Young is a sports writer at the Chattanooga Times Free Press who started work at the Chattanooga News-Free Press 24 years ago. He covers the Northwest Georgia prep beat and NASCAR. Lindsey’s hometown is Ringgold, Ga., and he graduated from Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School. He received an associate’s degree from Dalton Junior College (now Dalton State) and a bachelor’s degree in communications from UTC. He has won several writing awards, including two Tennessee Sports ...