There is always a sense of high anticipation when two teams suit up and go full contact with each other for the first time in late July.
Coaches and players alike have no idea how they will hold up at the onset, and all involved keep their fingers crossed in hopes of escaping the evening with good footage, a decent feel of their team, and only the most basic of football injuries.
The Rhea County Eagles and Clinton Dragons squared off in such a contest yesterday that had the locals singing the praises of the triple option as the visiting men in green and gold left with a 20-0 varsity victory, and a 12-7 victory in second and third team action.
The Eagles’ new scheme shined brightly on the ground, led by seniors Chandler Kaylor (FB), Aulbrey Smith (RB, Receiving TD/Rushing TD), and Bo Garmany (FB). Juniors Jackson Langley (RB), Bradley Goodwin (FB), and Destin Shelfer (RB, Rushing TD) also had major contributions to the offensive success.
Senior quarterback Zach Pemberton chewed up some decent yards on the ground on top of pulling off the first score for the Eagles on a pass to Smith.
Second team offense also got some valuable reps in the scrimmage, with senior backup quarterback Haden “Chigger” Frasier tossing a long touchdown pass to junior wide receiver/safety Dillon Reed and rushing for a score.
The defense also showed much promise, with the first string unit not giving up a single point, and only surrendering one touchdown between the second and third team combined.
Caleb Stampe recorded a sack during 1st team action, and Kaylor, Goodwin, and multiple others stood out for the Eagle defense that stood strong all scrimmage, forcing a few fumbles and a turnover on downs while only allowing one Dragon drive inside the red-zone on the combined 2nd and 3rd team defense.
Rhea County’s march to Cleveland continues this Saturday as they face the Mavericks of Anderson County on the road with details to be released shortly.