Dominick Francis.JPG

Phelps junior Dominick Francis powers through a Hazard defender during a contest at Marty Casey Stadium during the 2018 season.

PHELPS, Ky. — The Phelps Hornets couldn’t contain the Eminence Warriors on Saturday afternoon at Marty Casey Stadium, as the visitors cruised to a 50-22 win. 

EHS kicked off their big day with 3:38 left in the first quarter, as junior quarterback Adriene Bailey uncorked a 42-yard pass to senior wide receiver Dakadrian Saunders that went for a touchdown. After a penalty on the 2-point conversion attempt, the Warriors elected to attempt an extra point instead, and it was no good, leaving the score at 6-0.

On Phelps’ ensuing drive, it took just one play for Saunders to recover a fumble for Eminence and return it 25 yards for a score. After a successful 2-point conversion try on a run by Saunders, the Warriors pushed their lead to 14-0 with 3:15 left in the first quarter.

The home team would cough the ball up again on their next drive with 8:35 left in the first half, as it was recovered by EHS sophomore linebacker Davontaye Saunders. However, the road team would drive to the Phelps 33-yard line and lose a fumble of their own, and it was recovered by PHS junior linebacker Tyrell Hollis with 6:39 left in the first half.

The blue and white would capitalize off this turnover as junior tailback Dominick Francis took a handoff and ran 60 yards to pay dirt. The 2-point conversion try was no good, and with 4:39 left in the first half, the score stood at 14-6 Eminence.

The road team would respond with points of their own on their next drive, however, going 80 yards in five plays. Bailey would hook up with Dakadrian Saunders again, this time on a wide receiver screen, and he took it and ran 61 yards all the way to the house with 2:21 left in the second quarter. Senior place kicker Jared Yates’ extra point try was no good, and the Warriors extended their lead to 20-6.

Eminence would lead Phelps 20-6 at halftime.

The Hornets would get the ball to start the second half, but they would surrender another defensive touchdown as senior linebacker Marshall Metten would intercept a pass from PHS junior quarterback Riley Dotson and scamper 31 yards the other way for a score. The 2-point attempt was no good, and the lead swelled to 26-6 Eminence with 10:30 left in the third quarter.

On the visitors’ first drive of the second half, Dakadrian Saunders’ big day would continue as he caught another pass from Bailey, this time from 23 yards out, and ran the ball in for a score.

After the touchdown catch, he completed a pass to senior wide receiver Caleb Mathis for a successful 2-point conversion, and the Warriors lead now stood at 34-6 with 7:08 left in the third quarter.

On Phelps’ next drive, they would move the ball down to the Eminence 30-yard line, and Dakadrian Saunders would recover another Hornet fumble and dash 70-yards the other way for a touchdown. However, he would dance in the endzone and draw a celebration penalty, negating the touchdown. EHS was moved back to the Phelps 16-yard line as a result.

This wouldn’t faze them. The tough third quarter for the hosts would continue as Metten would score on a run from 3 yards away. The 2-point attempt was good after a Dakadrian Saunders run, and with 4:10 left in the third quarter, the road team now lead 42-6.

The Hornets would cut into the lead slightly on their next drive. With 9:30 left in the game, Francis would score a touchdown on a run from 22 yards out, and after a successful 2-point try on a run by Hollis, the Warriors’ lead was cut to 42-14.

Eminence wasn’t done putting points on the scoreboard. Dakadrian Saunders would cap off his huge day on the visitors’ ensuing drive as he caught a pass from Bailey and took it 65 yards to the house.

After catching the touchdown, he called his own number on a run for another successful two-point conversion, and with 4:29 left in the fourth quarter, the score was pushed to 50-14 EHS.

Phelps wouldn’t throw in the towel, however. With 20.2 seconds left in the game, Hollis took a carry from 10 yards out and found the endzone. The 2-point try was good on a run by Francis, and the score was 50-22 Warriors.

Eminence would defeat Phelps by a final score of 50-22.

Francis was dominant on the ground for the blue and white, rushing the ball 22 times for 225 yards and two scores on the day.

Dakadrian Saunders was also a force for the Warriors, rushing six times for 104 yards and a touchdown, catching three passes for 126 yards and three scores, and returning a fumble for a touchdown.

The Hornets lost the game despite winning the rushing battle over Eminence 311-193.

Phelps (3-3) will try to rebound from this loss as they head to No. 1 Pikeville for a showdown against the Panthers next Friday at the W.C Hambley Athletic Complex. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

Score by quarters

EHS (5-1): 14 6 22 8 — 50

PHS (3-3): 0 6 0 16 — 22

First quarter

EHS: 42-yard catch Dak. Saunders (PAT no good) 3:38

EHS: 25-yard fumble return Dak. Saunders (Two-point by Dak. Saunders) 3:15

Second quarter

PHS: 60-yard run Francis (Two-point no good) 4:39

EHS: 61-yard catch Dak. Saunders (PAT no good) 2:21

Third quarter

EHS: 31-yard interception return Metten (Two-point no good)

EHS: 23-yard catch Dak. Saunders (Two-point by Mathis) 7:08

EHS: 3-yard run Metten (Two-point by Dak. Saunders) 4:10

Fourth quarter

PHS: 22-yard run Francis (Two-point by Hollis) 9:30

EHS: 65-yard catch Dak. Saunders (Two-point by Dak. Saunders) 4:29

PHS: 10-yard run Hollis (Two-point by Francis) 20.2

Cameron Maynard is a freelance reporter for the Williamson Daily News. He can be reached by email at