Russellville had spent much of its five-game win streak building statewide respect, earning a No. 5 ranking in Class 3A and compiling an undefeated mark in Class 3A District 2.
But the Panthers had also begun to circle Thursday's date on the calendar - marking a showdown at home with Class 2A No. 1 Danville. Unfortunately for Russellville, even targeting the game on the schedule didn't help.
The Admirals (7-1) built a 26-7 lead and cruised to a 54-22 win at Rhea Stadium behind quarterback Trae Grey's 7-of-9 passing for 143 yards and three touchdowns.
The game pitted two of the state's best programs against one another, with Danville bringing 14 state championship game appearances (and 11 titles) into the contest and the Panthers bringing six trips to the final (with three wins).
The game was never terribly close, though.
Russellville (6-2) was hindered by losing leading rusher Dustin Sydnor early in the second quarter to a leg injury. Coming into the game, Sydnor paced the Panthers with 855 yards on just 72 carries on the season and 13 total touchdowns. The injury limited him to just three carries for 25 yards on the evening.
Russellville was led on the night by Jamarcus Gordon's 68 yards on ten carries and Damian Elam's 50 rushing yards on ten tries. Mikie Benton was 3-of-9 passing for 44 yards and two scores, with Elam's two touchdown grabs and Gordon's one scoring catch accounting for all the Panthers' scoring.
The Admirals' Tyrell Johnson needed only eight carries to gain 61 yards and score twice. Leonard Macon was Danville's leading pass catcher, totaling 78 yards and a touchdown on three grabs.
Russellville has a bye week before hosting Todd County Central October 26th, while the Admirals entertain Washington County next week.