The Ryle Raiders continued their perfect 2016 campaign on Friday night by knocking off their neighborhood rivals, the Cooper Jaguars, by a 49-20 margin at Borland Stadium.
Senior quarterback Tanner Morgan threw his 100th career TD pass when he connected with Bryce Ashley from 39 yards out, becoming the 21st player in Kentucky state history to hit the hundred-pass mark. He became just the 10th player in state history in last week’s win over Henry Clay to reach 10,000 career passing yards.
With Ryle (12-0) up 7-0, Cooper (7-5) would answer with a 70-yard touchdown drive on the ensuing possession capped off by Jerod Lonaker's 1-yard TD run.
The Raiders added a pair of touchdowns runs before the half. Jacob Chisholm hit paydirt first with a 1-yard scoring run. A 25-yard TD scamper by Morgan followed as Ryle took a 21-7 lead into the locker room.
After a quick three-and-out to open up the second half by the Jaguars, Ryle opened up the lead even further when Chisholm rushed for 17-yard run. That would prove to be too much for Cooper to overcome. The Jaguars answered with a touchdown, but the Raiders' defense got a key fumble recovery for a TD by Jackson High that quickly took the sail out of Cooper's winds.
"They stopped a really good offense," Morgan said of the Raiders’ defense. “Jackson (High) scored. Sandmann had a long fumble return -- that really set up a lot for us."
Head coach Mike Engler also praised the play for Ryle after the team’s win.
"We have got to give credit to our defense," Engler claimed. "We only ran six or seven offensive plays in the second half because our defense was making plays."
Lonaker passed for 179, including just 85 yards to Dante Hendrix in duo’s final game together.
"They have maybe the best receiver in the state: Hendrix, he’s really good," Engler claimed. "We wanted to take Hendrix out of the game. So we double teamed him."
Chisholm would finish the night with 160 yards rushing and three touchdowns.
Up next, Ryle will hit the road for meeting with Scott County in as the KHSAA 6A playoffs continue next Friday night.