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franklin county times

Union takes playoff win over Lake

By By Marty Stamper/EMG sports assistant
November 23, 2002
LAKE Union turned eight Lake turnovers into a surprisingly easy 31-14 win in the second round of the Class 1A state playoffs Friday at Death Valley.
The Hornets, 8-5, fumbled the ball seven times and lost it on four occasions. Lake also suffered four interceptions.
By halftime, Lake had thrown three interceptions and had lost two fumbles as Union took a 25-0 lead into the break.
Disaster struck on Lake's opening play as LaDonovan Towner fumbled at his 44. Three plays later, Anthony Johnson gave the Yellowjackets a 6-0 lead on a 29-yard run. Quincy Patrick's extra point put Union up 7-0 with 10:52 left in the opening period.
Union covered 76 yards in two plays to go up 13-0. Patrick hit Derrick Harris for a 63-yard touchdown pass with 7:32 to go in the first quarter. The PAT failed.
On their next series, the Jackets went 53 yards in three plays with Patrick scoring on a 27-yard option keeper around left end with 2:38 left in the first period. A two-point run failed.
Lando Blalock put Union back in business when he picked off a Joseph Hunt pass at midfield. It took Johnson one play to cover the 50 yards on a perfect option pitch from Patrick over a Lake defender. A two-point pass fell incomplete, leaving Union with a 25-0 lead and 9:36 still showing in the first half.
Harris ended two more Lake first half drives with interceptions.
After neither team scored in the third quarter, Union upped its lead to 31-0 with 8:39 left in the game when Patrick hit Harris with a fade pattern in the left corner of the end zone. The six-play, 27-yard drive was set up by a Blalock recovery of a Damion Gray fumble. An extra point attempt failed.
The Hornets took advantage of a Union fumble to get on the scoreboard with 4:52 remaining. Shardarick Love scored on a 16-yard run to cap a four-play, 55-yard drive. Hunt hit Calvin Patrick for a two-point conversion.
Lake recovered a fumble by Maurice Thames and drove 30 yards in three plays to pull to within 31-14 with 2:37 left as Towner scored on a 12-yard run. A two-point try failed, leaving Lake needing three more scores for the win.
The Hornets recovered their second onside kick, but turned the ball over on downs as Union ran out the clock and reached the 10-win plateau for only the second time in school history.
Union outgained Lake 311-268 with 206 of Union's yards coming on 36 rushes. Johnson had 113 yards on eight carries, while Harper had 52 yards on eight rushes.
Defensively, Zach Robinson had nine tackles and Darnell Temple had eight for Union.
Union, 10-3, will host Puckett, 11-1, for the Class 1A South State championship on Friday. Union beat the Wolves 18-13 three weeks ago for the Region 3-1A title. Puckett doubled Nanih Waiya 42-21 Friday after leading 42-0 at halftime.

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