1-2 punch leads Blue Devils -
LEBANON – Utilizing a solid 1-2 offensive punch, Class 6A Lebanon knocked Class 3A Fairview from the ranks of the undefeated 49-35 Saturday at sun-splashed Clifton Tribble Field / Danny Watkins Stadium.
Down 14-13 at intermission, Blue Devils scored on each of their first five possessions in the second half – improving to 2-3 on the season.
LHS piled up 446 yards in total offense and 20 first downs as senior tailback Dequantay Shannon and sophomore quarterback Jalen Abston enjoyed stellar performances.
Shannon broke the 200-yard rushing mark for the fourth time in his LHS career, running 17 times for 226 yards, scoring touchdowns on runs of 4, 15, 60 and 62 yards.
Abston connected on 15-of-21 pass attempts for 207 yards with two TD's with no interceptions.
"They (Fairview) have a good football team," said Lebanon coach Chuck Gentry. "They came up here and expected to win. "I told our kids all week long that a 3A school doesn't call a 6A school looking for a game unless they think they can win.
"I thought our depth wore on them in the second half. We started running the ball better out of our one-back set and the offensive line did a pretty good job. "We're glad to get a win, maybe it was a little ugly at times, but we needed this one."
Fairview opened the game in fine fashion, marching 53 yards in 9 plays as senior Logan Nardozzi capped the drive with a 15-yard touchdown run, breaking two tackles along the way.
With a Matt Stevens PAT, the 'Jackets led 7-0 at the 9:19 mark of the first period.
Lebanon responded quickly to knot the score at 7-7 as Abston connected with junior flanker Kemontez Logue on a 48-yard touchdown pass to complete a 4 play, 79 yard drive.
The Blue Devils tallied again as Shannon powered off right tackle for 4 yards and a score at the 3:56 mark of the second quarter – wrapping up an 11 play, 67 yard drive. The PAT try by Juan Jimenez was blocked.
Fairview took a 14-13 lead into the halftime break as fullback Brody Cox hauled in a screen pass for Riley Bennett and danced 33 yards for a touchdown with 2:09 remaining in the quarter.
Kicking off to start the third quarter, a bit of Fairview trickery misfired as Stevens attempted an onside kick toward the 'Jacket boundary. The line drive attempt was fielded in the air by Lebanon sophomore Nolan Sandefur who raced 22 yards down to the Fairview 30.
Taking advantage of the miscue, Lebanon scored in three plays as Shannon powered in from 15 yards out with 10:17 left in the third. A successful 2-point conversion pass from Abston to H-back Kyle Scott lifted the Blue Devils to a 21-14 lead.
LHS scored on each of its next four second half possessions, but Fairview stayed within striking distance with TD drives of 66 and 75 yards with a pair of short touchdown runs from Cox.
Sophomore Kendrick Curtis pulled the Yellow Jackets to within two scores as he stripped the ball from Lebanon sophomore Josh Bass and scored on a 55-yard return with 1:43 left in regulation.
Nardozzi, a 2019 Class 3A Mr. Football finalist, was held to 47 yards on 14 carries by the LHS defense and just 14 yards in the second half.
Lebanon's Abston ran six times for 27 yards and a touchdown. Logue caught 5 passes for 85 yards and a score; Anthony Crowell caught 5 balls for 62 and a TD while Will Seats had 2 receptions for 21 yards.
Shannon finished with 329 all-purpose yards -- 226 rushing, 50 on kick returns and 53 on four receptions.
Fairview's Bennett completed 13-of-27 pass attempts for 132 yards and one touchdown. He ran 7 times for 39 yards. Bennett's top receiver was junior Cason Edmonson with six catches for 46 yards.
The Yellow Jackets totaled 239 yards and 19 first downs on 57 offensive snaps.
Lebanon moved to 3-3 overall headed into a Friday, Oct. 2 home game with Region 4, 6A rival Station Camp. Now 3-1 on the season, Fairview is scheduled to play at Camden Friday, Oct. 2.