Cloudland outlasts North for win in regular season finale



Cloudland held off a pesky Sullivan North squad on Friday night.

The ‘Landers used a pair of second-half touchdowns to take a 12-0 victory over the Golden Raiders in the regular-season finale at Orr Field.

With the win, CHS improved to 6-4 on the season. Cloudland will host the opening round of the Class A playoffs next Friday night against Midway.

It was the final game for the Sullivan North program.

Friday night’s contest was a hard-fought battle for both teams.

After Cloudland was stopped on fourth down on the opening drive, Sullivan North was able to march into Cloudland territory, but a Chase Shell interception inside the Cloudland 5 ended the drive.

The ‘Landers were unable to take advantage of the turnover as the first quarter ended scoreless.

The second quarter was much the same as both teams turned the ball over on downs. The Cloudland defense came up big again in the closing minutes of the half by keeping North out of the endzone after they moved inside the CHS 20. The half ended in a 0-0 stalemate.

Cloudland started turning the momentum on the opening kickoff of the third quarter. The ‘Landers kicked a squib kick and Gage McKinney recovered it to set CHS up inside North territory.

Cloudland went to work with an 11-play drive that saw Seth Birchfield score on a one-yard run to give Cloudland a 6-0 lead. The two-point conversion was unsuccessful.

The ‘Lander defense came up big on the next North possession as Caleb Sluder jumped on a Sullivan North fumble. Cloudland wasn’t able to convert a fourth-and-inches on the ensuing drive and the teams traded possessions to end the third quarter.

Cloudland got back on the board to open the final stanza as Elijah Blair caught a 6-yard pass from Shell with 8:49 to play. That gave CHS a 12-0 lead.

After North was stopped short on fourth down with just over seven minutes to play, Cloudland was able to grind out the win.

Birchfield finished with 20 carries for 45 yards. Sluder added nine carries for 42 yards, while Coy Laney had 30 yards on eight carries.

Shell finished the night with 24 yards rushing and 30 yards passing.


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