Blaze, Wolverines battle down to the wire

Blaze, Wolverines battle down to the wire

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Blaze, Wolverines battle down to the wire

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MURFREESBORO

Blackman coach Philip Shadowens wasn’t happy with his team’s performance Friday night.

The good thing? The fourth-year Blaze football coach has a week to work on improving what he didn’t like.

Blackman edged La Vergne 7-6 at Riverdale’s Tomahawk Stadium in the Rutherford County Football Jamboree.

“We’re not ready to play on Friday night right now,” Shadowens said. “I thought our tempo was slow. We didn’t play the game fast.

“I thought overall I saw some good things out of some first groups. But depth wise I didn’t like what I saw.”

Blackman plays Friday at Independence in its Week 0 game. La Vergne travels to Antioch. Both games are start at 7 p.m.

Junior Cole Notgrass led Blackman with 70 yards on nine carries. His 2-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-goal with 10:01 left was the Blaze’s lone score. Kyle Mincy added the extra point in what was the game winner.

“I’m not really use to getting the ball a lot,” Notgrass said. “I got really tired after that (28-yard run).”

La Vergne answered Blackman’s score with Daryl James breaking a 17-yard touchdown run. However Gabe Pledger’s extra point attempt was wide.

James finished with 46 yards on nine carries to lead La Vergne.

“He finished the season really strong for us,” La Vergne coach Stanton Stevens said. “We hope he starts the season like he finished. We’re going to give everybody a steady diet of our running backs. We feel we are deep there even though you only got to see one of them.

“But I believe when a guy has a rhythm to let him go.”

Blackman senior running back Dee Mathers was held out with a minor shoulder injury. Shadowens said prior to the jamboree that he could play if it was a game.

Fullback Antonio Allen had two carries for 17 yards. The Blaze did have one injury in backup running back Jaylen Miller, a La Vergne transfer. Miller went down late in the game with a knee injury.

“We didn’t want to see that happen,” Shadowens said. “It looks like it’s nothing catastrophic, maybe just a strain.”

Quarterback C.J. Fore added 14 yards on three carries for La Vergne and was 1 of 5 passing for 31 yards.

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