RINGGOLD, Ga. — The Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe Warriors enjoyed their season-opening win so much that they decided to do it again. Friday night's 28-0 win at Heritage mirrored the previous week's win over Gordon Lee, down to the final score and the way the LFO defense dominated.
For the second consecutive game the Warriors held their opponent under 100 yards of total offense, allowing 98 to the Generals and producing eight plays of negative yardage through the first three quarters. Offensively, senior running back Pooh Harden had his way, rushing for 263 yards on 22 carries and scoring the game's first and final touchdowns on highlight-reel runs.
"Everything worked tonight," Harden said. "We had some great teamwork. I told the line I would score as many times as I could and get as many yards as possible if they blocked for me, and they were great.
"It's a big win for us and me personally, since this is the first time since I've been at LFO that we've beaten them."
Harden's 50-yard run on the first play of the Warriors' second possession set them up at the Heritage 3, but two penalties moved them back to the 24. On third-and-goal from the 21 Harden broke a simple draw play for a touchdown and a 7-0 lead.
The score was 10-0 at halftime, and though LFO had dominated, two drives had stalled in Heritage territory.
The Generals came out in the second half ready to make the Warriors pay for the missed opportunities. Heritage moved the ball to the LFO 47 on its first drive, but senior linebacker Nate Long stripped quarterback Hunter Talley and recovered the ball to end the threat.
Six consecutive Harden runs moved the ball to the Heritage 6, where Trey Silmon connected with Jackson Wallin on a third-down touchdown pass and a 17-0 lead.
"The offense did a better job tonight in producing some gut drives when we had to," said LFO coach Todd Windham, whose team amassed 308 rushing yards. "It was only 10-0 at the half and they came out with some energy, so we had to answer and we did. It's just like last week: I told them if we win the box and be physical, we would win."
The final Heritage threat reached the LFO 35 late in the third quarter, but another lost fumble ended it. The Warriors added a Kyle Trego field goal and Harden's 47-yard run to end the scoring.
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 ...