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Indians strike early, run past Dickson for 1st district win

Beau Bearden
bbearden@gannett.com

PLAINVIEW — Sometimes a much-needed victory at home is all it takes for a squad to regain its morale, especially when the season hasn't started the best way.

The Plainview High School football team can agree to that after using a solid rushing attack Friday night to tally its first win in a 48-7 decision over Dickson.

“We got that bad taste out our mouths, so to speak,” said Indians head coach Joe Price. “I know our football team is good. We’ve just had some unfortunate injuries that have kind of slowed us down a little bit. But the kids that we have are good and they play hard. When your kids play hard, you know you always have a chance to go win football games as long as you don’t turn the ball over and do any of those things that are going to put you behind.”

Plainview made sure it didn’t commit any turnovers against the Comets and a lot of that had to do with fresh legs. The Indians turned to four different athletes and they combined for 352 yards and four touchdowns.

Hunter Young led the way with 10 carries for 129 yards and a score, while Jeston Gilliam ran for 97 yards and two touchdowns. Caden Pickens rushed for 93 yards and a score, while also finding Morgan Pearson on a 21-yard flea-flicker touchdown in the second quarter. Blue Norman added 33 rushing yards on eight carries.

“The kids really executed,” Price said. “We installed a new offense this week and they went out and executed. They did a great job. I’m really proud of them. They played hard on defense. Until the second group got in the game, we had a shutout going. The kids played really well.”

And starting quarterback Grant Graves was one of those Indians who played well. He attempted just two passes, but one was for a 29-yard touchdown to Pearson. And while he didn’t have to throw the ball much, his poise in the pocket and game management were instrumental down the stretch.

“I thought Grant did a great job of executing what we were trying to do.” Price said. “We have to give him some credit. He’s a young kid, just a sophomore, who comes in for his first start and does a great job.”

Meanwhile, it was a tough outing on the other sideline, especially after Dickson’s Charvis Wright was taken off the field on a stretcher with 9:01 remaining in the second quarter.

There was worry about his status following the play, but Comets head coach Steve Day received some good news.

“I called him at halftime — he’s going to be fine,” Day said of Wright. “He just took a shot, a face mask or a helmet, to the back. A 100% of that is precautionary. You just can’t risk it. You never want to take a chance on something like that. That was deflating emotionally and then it seemed after that we were just getting beat up.”

Dickson trailed 12-0 before Wright’s close call and things didn’t get much better as they went into halftime with a 32-0 deficit.

Plainview pushed its lead to 40-0 following Young’s 33-yard run and his successful two-point conversion at the 10:37 mark of the third quarter. The Indians then put the nail in the coffin with 2:59 to play when Blane Gibbs rushed for a 26-yard touchdown to account for the final tally.

The Indians (1-4, 1-1 District 3A-2) look to tally their second straight win at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 9 when Madill (2-3, 1-1 District 3A-2) comes to town.

“This is definitely a great thing to build on,” Price said. “I think the kids are excited. We got our confidence back is where we feel we are right now.”

The Comets are still searching for that after their lone score of the game came on Jack McDonald’s 19-yard touchdown pass to Jzavionn Bennett with 10:35 left in the game.

Dickson (0-5 overall, 0-2 District 3A-2) gets an opportunity to bounce back at home when it hosts Lone Grove (3-2 overall, 1-1 District 3A-2) at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 9.

“You have to reset your focus and take it week by week,” Day said. “Each week presents a new challenge and a different opportunity to go out and beat somebody. And in this district, you can’t lose that focus or else you’ll get beat again by 40."