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Football: Paladins come up short in region battle
Pinecrest graphic 10-21-22

Pinecrest Academy hung tough against The King's Academy but couldn't come out with a GAPPS Region 1-2A victory Saturday at Kell.

The Knights scored on their first possession and benefitted from an overturned fumble that would have extended a Paladins series to carry a 7-0 lead into the second quarter.

King's Academy extended its advantage to 13-0 with a rushing touchdown. Following a Paladins fumble, the Knights looked set to push further ahead before halftime.

Instead, Pinecrest (3-5, 0-2) flipped the momentum on Brock Barbee's 90-yard interception return for a touchdown. Even though the point-after try was blocked, the Paladins had successfully pulled within one score entering the break.

Another Paladins turnover, this one an interception, led to a two-play, 35-yard touchdown drive for the Knights.

With just under five minutes left in the third quarter, Pinecrest responded with its best series of the contest, as the Paladins drove 79 yards in nine plays.

Barbee provided a key 34-yard run, and Jacob White tossed a 2-yard scoring pass to Matthew Mitchell.

With a second missed PAT, the Paladins trailed by eight points but remained within striking distance.

The Pinecrest defense gave its offense two more attempts at driving for the tying score. The first series ended with a three-and-out, while the second concluded on a fourth-down incompletion, allowing King's Academy to run out the clock.

Next up for the Paladins will be their final home game of the regular season Oct. 28 against Cherokee Christian.