By Charlie Fouche
Murray County lost 41-14 to visiting Coosa on Friday night, completing a season without a win on the football field for the second year in a row.
Indians coach John Hammond was proud of his team nonetheless.
“You have to hand it to our seniors,” Hammond said. “They hung with it. They were out here for three and four years without a lot to play for, but they stayed with the program. They never gave up. They worked hard and showed strong leadership, and I am proud of each and every one of them.”
Hammond said the Indians (0-10, 0-7 Region 7-2A) will use this season as a foundation for the future. Murray County, which won two games by forfeit in 2011, last won on the field on Oct. 1, 2010, a 20-13 overtime victory against Pickens.
“Tonight we found some things that we can build on for next year,” Hammond said. “We will still be a young team. Our quarterback will have two more years to play, and we will be running the veer. We will have to replace some of our line, but we will have all our skill players back.”
Indians quarterback Justin Smith, a sophomore, scored both Murray County touchdowns on 2-yard runs in the second half. The third-quarter score was set up when defensive back Miguel Barajas intercepted a Coosa pass and returned it 32 yards to the Coosa 20-yard line. Smith scored four plays later as Coosa clinched a state playoff spot.
The Indians’ final score was at the end of a four-and-a-half minute, 80-yard drive in the fourth quarter. Nathan Williams ran the ball six times and Spencer Baggett once to set up Smith’s touchdown.
Hammond was proud of the entire Class of 2013 on senior night.
“They are all good boys,” Hammond replied. “I’m proud of every one of them. Of course, we would like to go 10-0, but this is preparing them for life. The main thing is not what happens on the football field, but if they come out to be good citizens. They are on their way to that.”