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WCHS JV stings Bees
Pioneers beat Upperman in close contest
Josh Macanas fights his way for another gain and first down in Thursday nights win over the Upperman Golden Eagles 36-32. Macanas scored two touchdowns and a two-point conversion.

First winning the toss and then clinching the game, the Warren County High School JV football team defeated the Upperman Bees 36-32 at Nunley Stadium on Thursday night after a Warren County early lead gave way to a suspenseful finale that had fans buzzing.
The Pioneers chose to kick off and Upperman stumbled early fumbling, then recovering, the kickoff. The Bees fumbled again on their first possession and Pioneer Luke Nisbett was there to recover setting up an 18-yard TD scramble by Tre Ladet. A failed conversion attempt had the Pioneers up 6-0 just minutes into the game.
Warren County stuffed Upperman on its next possession to regain the ball. That’s when Pioneer Josh Macanas took some real estate with 49 yards, 43 of which was a TD run. This time the two-point conversion was good leading to a Pioneer 14-0 lead.
The Bees clawed their way back into the ballgame, 14-8, with 3:43 left in the first half thanks to a 20-yard TD run and successful two-point conversion.
The Pioneers struck back quickly with a drive starting at Upperman’s 44-yard line. Macanas and Tre Ladet steamrolled to the 1-yard line where Macanas took it in for six and Haywood added two for the halftime score, 22-8.
It was still all Warren County when Noah Miles took the ball 19 yards for a TD, 28-8, and Ladet added the two-point conversion, 30-8, with 2:58 remaining in the third quarter.
That’s when the Bees started to swarm as they attacked on the ground and in the air with Upperman QB Donoven McCallister throwing into the endzone followed by a successful conversion making it 30-16 in just 33 seconds.
The Pioneers went four and out and the Bees took to the air again as McCallister threw a 30-yard pass to receiver Drew Davidson followed by a keeper by McCallister and another conversion, 30-24.
The Pioneers came back but came up a little short on third down, opting a fake punt which was unsuccessful and turned the ball over on downs.
A critical juncture ensued for the Bees, but Nisbett would have none of it as he sacked McCallister for a loss of three. From this point on, it was all Warren County as the defense stepped up as Antonia Gantt recovered a Bee fumble.
Ladet ran down the clock with another first down into the Bees red zone where Upperman expended all its timeouts trying to recover. It didn’t happen as the Pioneers sealed the deal when Jaterrius Rozer added six more making it 36-24 with 2:24 remaining.
The Bees took to the air one last time with a McCallister to Davidson 64-yard TD pass and conversion 36-32. Upperman tried an onsides kick in the remaining 1:10, but excellent special teams play by Aaron Myers covered it right up, effectively ending the contest as the Pioneers took a knee to run out the clock.
“The boys played hard,” said Pioneer coach Paul Martin. “They’re finally buying into what we’ve been trying to do … play for each other and the team. What more could you ask?”
“We have some great coaches,” Martin continued. “I have to give a shout-out to the defensive line with players like T.R. Dyer, Emilio Sanchez, Brian Valadez, Wayne Randolph and Austin McBride.”
Also coaching for the Pioneer JV team were Camron Bond, Dylan Crews, Ben Matheny, Isaac Slatton, Brandon Thomas, Michael Thrower, David Upton and Lucas Williams.
Said Upperman coach Brett Nash, “I’m very proud of the way the kids fought back after trailing at the half. It shows a lot of character and toughness from our young guys to fight back and nearly get the win.”
Freshman/JV Pioneer action continues on the road, Monday, Sept. 19, in White County beginning at 6 p.m.