Bell County’s junior varsity Bobcats built a six-point halftime lead as Harlan County in Monday’s SEKC semifinals, but the Bears scored 26 points in the second half to pull out a 32-12 win.
“I told them not to panic at the half. They started to knock people around in the second half and play Black Bear football,” said Harlan County coach Eddie Creech.
Harlan County opened the scoring as Bobby Huff went in on a 5-yard touchdown run on the Bears’ opening drive to make it 6-0.
Bell County answered back with a pair of scores in the second quarter. Junior Dalton Brummett connected with Corey Swanner on a 25-yard touchdown pass on a fourth down play to tie the game with 6:34 left in the first half.
Freshman Chase Woolum broke free for a 78-yard touchdown run at the 2:43 mark and the Bobcats took a 12-6 lead into the half.
Bell was driving with a chance to add to the lead in the third quarter, but a fumble was recovered by Harlan County’s Huff at the Bear 22. Zach Jenkins had several powerful runs on the ensuing drive as Harlan County marched down the field. On 4th down, Nick Cornett went seven yards and into the end zone on a reverse to tie the game at 12.
A 42-yard touchdown run from Huff put the Bears on top early in the fourth quarter and Fred Massey added the two-point conversion run to make it 20-12.
A fumble and an interception led to two more Harlan County scores in the final period as they pulled away for the 32-12 win.
Huff and Jenkins scored the late rushing touchdowns for the Bears.
Harlan County will host either Knox Central or Clay County in the SEKC junior varsity championship on Monday.