Storm Warning: Who was that masked man? Zayden Parker, that is who! @1776Bank @PrepSpin @KyHighFootball @MaxPreps @minguabeefjerky @HopkinsCentral @evans02_mike @840WHAS @sfitz_840whas

Zayden Parker, '25 DE, had three (3) sacks in the opener

’25 DE already putting his stamp on the ’23 season

Hard to imagine individual players putting up bigger numbers than what we saw the opening weekend. We had a running back rush for over 400-yards in 30-carries, we saw a QB throw for around 400-yards, and we experienced a QB accumulate close to 700-yards (670) of total offense. We shouldn’t overlook what Zayden Parker did for Central in its opener. Parker had 3.5-sacks all last season (or the six games in which he played). Opening night, Parker had three (3) QB-sacks to open the year. This kid is a terror screaming off his edge like Reese Belt is coming off the other end. Together, Central promises to be dangerous in passing situations defensively.

HB Lyon, Scouting Division, KPGFootball

Morton’s Gap, Kentucky: “The Lone Ranger” was a television show which came on daily when I was a kid. We would always watch it after school.

At some point in the action, a character on the show would always say, “Hey, who was that masked man?” To which someone would reply, “That was the Lone Ranger.”

Zayden Parker wears a visor which resembles a mask. We found ourselves asking, many times, over the course of the opener, as he was sacking Caldwell’s QB thrice, “Hey, who was that masked man?”

It may not have been “The Lone Ranger.” For our purposes, it was just as welcomed of a sight and every bit as heroic. That masked man on Friday night was Zayden Parker.

Parker wore number 12 a year ago. This year, the ’25 DE is wearing No. 7. Number seven was pretty active screaming around end the other night in Central’s home opening, and season opening, victory over Caldwell County.

Right off the bat we should mention it wasn’t a great offensive night for the Air Raid. Isaac Earl was good when he had to be but the offensive numbers were nothing about which to write home.

We went over this in our postgame article. Central rushed for 104-yards against the Tigers from Princeton. The Storm threw for 133-yards.

The defense made the Caldwell offensive numbers ever more paltry than the offense’s production. Caldwell rushed for 103-yards and passed for 72.

Parker made a real difference with his persistent pressure on a night we desperately needed it…

Chris Manning, Head Football Coach, Hopkins County Central

Throw in four (4) picks on the night for The Storm and you may well wonder just how in the world Central stands presently at 1-0. We are right there with you.

One reason Central was the “last man standing” was the play from its junior DE, Zayden Parker. Parker is wearing No. 7 this season and was wearing No. 12 last.

Parker got 6-games of run in ’22 and managed 3.5-sacks. That is quite productive.

In ’23, Parker decided to come close to equally ’22’s numbers on opening night. Parker had three (3) QB-sacks against Caldwell County to open this season.

That is an astonishing amount of production for just one game. In many ways, equally as astounding as the other performances mentioned earlier in this piece.

Central has a trip to Oak Grove, Kentucky to battle a Ft. Campbell Falcon team which has certainly seen better days. Fort Campbell, like Central, stands at 1-0 on the new season. The Falcons bested Clarksville Northwest in its opener.

Fort Campbell was 4-7 a season ago. Central and Ft. Campbell didn’t play in ’22, so how Friday night pans out is anyone’s guess.

We are going to call this one a Central win with the Storm coming back to battle North next week 2-0. KPGFootball prediction:

Central 31 (81% chance of winning), Fort Campbell 17 (19%)

This is Fletcher W. Long, reporting for KPGFootball, reminding you to PLAY THROUGH THE WHISTLE!

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Editor’s Note: After watching film, it is claimed the prospect had two-sacks, not three. We saw the same film and are sticking with our anlaysis.


About Fletcher Long 1423 Articles
Two-time winner of Kentucky Press Association awards for excellence in writing and reporting news stories while Managing Editor of the Jackson (KY) Times-Voice

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