Lee County Season Ends In Eastern Semi-Finals, Cleveland Beats Yellow Jackets 38-16
The Lee County Yellow Jackets ended their season Friday night with a 38-16 loss in the Eastern Semi-Finals to Cleveland. Cleveland held a 7-3 advantage at the break after both defensives controlled the first half of play, only to see Lee County take its only lead of the game (10-7) seconds into the 3rd quarter on a 47-yard pass play to TJ Johnson. But it was all Cleveland from there, as Quarterback Skylar Locklear kept Lee County on its heels with timely scrambling and accurate passing in the 2nd half, and Cleveland gradually pulled away. Cleveland improved to 9-0 on the season and will face conference rival Clayton in the Eastern Final, while Lee County will end its season at 8-1.
The Cleveland defensive front stymied the Yellow Jackets all night and shut down the Lee run game, forcing the Yellow Jackets to have to move the ball through the air. The Yellow Jackets had 229 yards through the air, but it was not enough as Cleveland scored on 4 of its first 5 possessions in the 2nd half to put the game away.
Lee County only managed 11 yards on 9 carries and after averaging just over 130 yards per game on the ground for the season. Will Patterson was 21-33 for 229 yards on the night while Cleveland managed 171 yards on the ground and 303 yards in the air.
Lee County will say goodbye to a senior class that posted a 46-4 record over the last 4 years and won 4 consecutive Tri-County 3A Conference titles. This group also won an Eastern 3AA Championship and finished as State Runner-Up in 2019.
Lee County 0 3 7 6 16
Cleveland 0 7 14 17 38
CL – Johnson 2 run (Sayyad kick)
LC – Kennedy Hernandez 20 FG
LC – TJ Johnson 47 pass from Will Patterson (Hernandez kick)
CL – Roccia 34 pass from Locklear (Sayyad kick)
CL – Locklear 8 run (Sayyad kick)
CL – Johnson 1 run (Sayyad kick)
LC – Tyric McKendall 52 pass from Patterson (2-pt conv failed)
CL – Zayyad 39 FG
CL – Robinson 15 Fumble return
LC – TJ John son 7-9, Jennings 2-2 Totals 9-11
CL – Totals 52-171
LC – Will Patterson 21-33-229-2TD-3INT
CL – Locklear 22-32-303-1TD-1INT
LC – McKendall 7-88, Palmer 6-56, Garrison 3-19, TJ Johnson 4-62, Jennings 1-4 Totals 21-229
CL – Totals 22-303
*The Norman Financial Group Offensive Player of the Game was Tyric McKendall and Delmaz Jennings was selected as the Defensive Player of the Game.
*Lee County had come out on top of the turnover battle in each of the first 8 games this season but lost that battle to Cleveland 4-2 with a fumble and 3 INTs.