Cloudland holds off Avery for Border Battle



For the second year in a row, Cloudland’s Border Battle lived up to its’ billing.

The ‘Landers held on to take a 42-36 victory over Avery County (N.C.) on Friday night at Orr Field. Jordan Coffey led the way for Cloudland as he had 267 yards on the ground.

Cloudland improves to 3-0 on the season.

While Cloudland had the last advantage, the Vikings, however, struck first.

Sam McCollum ran in for a 12-yard touchdown to help ACHS take an 8-0 lead four minutes into the game. The ‘Landers answered as Coffey scored on a 9-yard run, and Josh Blair added the conversion to tie the game at 8-8 going into the second quarter.

Cloudland took their first advance of the game as Blair scored on an 11-yard run and Malachi Benfield found Jacob Singleton for a 21-yard touchdown pass. Blair’s conversion gave CHS a 22-8 lead with 1:03 to play.

Avery, however, struck on the ensuing kickoff as Tyree Jackson scored on an 85-yard run. The ‘Landers maintained a 22-14 lead at the half.

Coffey scored his second touchdown of the night on a five-yard run to double up the Vikings. Avery’s Van McCollum answered with a 34-yard run to close Avery back within 28-20 going into the final eight minutes.

In the fourth quarter, Cloudland added to the lead with a Blair four-yard touchdown run. Coffey extended the lead to 42-20 on an eight-yard run while Hayden Houston added the conversion.

S. McCollum and the Vikings didn’t go down without a fight. S. McCollum found his brother twice for lengthy touchdowns to close the CHS lead to a single possession with just over two minutes remaining.

Cloudland, however, held on for the win.

Coffey tallied 267 yards on 37 carries, while Blair had 65 yards on 10 carries. Hunter Blair had 12 carries for 63 yards. Triston Lacy had 31 yards on three carries.

V. McCollum led Avery with 98 yards rushing and went 5-of-12 passing for 151 yards through the air.

Cloudland opens region play next Friday with a trip to Hancock County.

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