By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Freshmen win in overtime
Isaiah Grayson
Isaiah Grayson finds room to run against NGA Thursday night at Nunley Stadium. Grayson ran for two touchdowns, including one in overtime, and made the game-winning stop to lead the freshman Pioneers to a 26-20 victory over the Falcons. - photo by Jeffery Simmons

Isaiah Grayson wasn’t satisfied with scoring a touchdown in overtime of Thursday’s freshman football game. The Pioneer standout wanted to make the game-winning tackle too.
The Warren County High School freshman football team wasn’t assured victory over the NGA Falcons until Grayson stopped the visitors from Lincoln County on fourth down in overtime. Grayson stripped the ball and dove on it to preserve a 26-20 victory, the first of the season for the Pioneers.
Warren County (1-2) started the season with road losses to Franklin County and Shelbyville, but looked right at home while delighting the home crowd. From start to finish, Thursday’s freshman football game at Nunley Stadium was full of excitement.
Grayson took center stage in the victory, scoring two touchdowns while playing quarterback full time. He also came up with the biggest stop of the game, one that finally ended a back-and-forth affair.
The two teams went into overtime knotted at 20-20. The visitors won the overtime toss and elected to go on defense first.
Warren County decided to keep the ball on the ground in extra time, often allowing Grayson the option to hand it off or make a move of his own. Grayson called his number a few times, including on a four-yard touchdown run that gave the Pioneers the lead for good.
Warren County tried to add to its lead on a two-point conversion, but was stopped on the play.
NGA, which entered the contest 2-0 and on the heels of a 47-7 blowout win over Giles County, knew it had to match Grayson’s touchdown to keep the game going. The Pioneer safety wasn’t going to allow it though.
On fourth-and-goal from the Pioneer 2, Grayson was able to track down the Falcon ball carrier and jar the ball loose. Taking matters into his own hands, Grayson dove on the ball to end the game.
Coach David Upton was proud of the way his Pioneers fought throughout the game. The win only added to the excitement.
“It was a wonderful game to watch. Win or lose, I was going to be proud of the way they played,” said Upton. “It was great to see them finish strong.”
Noah Campbell also had a huge game for the Pioneers. Campbell scored two touchdowns in the contest – the first coming on the game’s opening play.
Warren County received the opening kickoff and Campbell was back at his own goal line to await the kick. A disastrous start looked possible when the ball bounced off Campbell’s chest, but the freshman calmly scooped the ball and looked for daylight.
He found it right through the middle of the field, where the Pioneer return team had opened up a hole. Campbell raced 90 yards untouched as he was able to dive into the endzone just before two Falcons could make a tackle.
The Pioneers originally made it 8-0 on a two-point conversion by Grayson, but the score was called back on a penalty. Warren County failed on its second try.
NGA answered back on its second possession. Just after the start of the second quarter, Falcon running back Logan Crabtree was able to slide out of the backfield on a third-and-13 to snag a screen pass. Crabtree went down the sideline to score from 30 yards out to tie the game.
Warren County didn’t waste time in going back ahead.
Grayson capped a scoring drive that lasted late into the second quarter with a one-yard run to put the Pioneers up 12-6.
The Falcons responded with a touchdown and a two-point conversion late in the first half to lead 14-12 at halftime. NGA added to its lead with a 70-yard touchdown pass in the second half to push the Pioneers behind 20-12.
Warren County used a last-gasp drive in the fourth quarter to send the game to overtime. Campbell capped a lengthy drive, one that featured the Pioneers converting on a fourth-and-13 try, on a short touchdown run around the edge. Peppi Miller followed by scoring on a jet sweep, pushing the game into overtime where Warren County would find a way to win.
The Pioneers will be back in action Tuesday with a road game at Stone Memorial. Kickoff is set for 6 p.m.