Patriots Dodge Hurricanes, 27-21

After last week’s big win against Sevier County, the Jefferson County Patriot football went on Hurricane watch in Dumplin Valley.

Photo by Angie Stanley, Jefferson County Post Sports

The first quarter brought slow momentum for both the Patriot and the Morristown East offences, as the defensive lines showed what they were made of. The Hurricane offense struggled in the redzone, with key stops made by Alex Mojica and Josh Miller, who both proved themselves forces to be reckoned with throughout he game. The Patriots, after large gains from Tanner Atkins and Gage Bolin, could not hit the endzone due to the wall Morristown East obviously developed in the off season. It was apparent early that the Hurricanes were not going away, and Jefferson County were going to have to batten down the hatches.

Photo by Angie Stanley, Jefferson County Post Sports

The second quarter was much of the same back and forth. Morristown East came very close to scoring on a couple of their drives, but the Patriot defense tightened up in the redzone once again, and the Hurricanes could not penetrate the barrier. Jefferson County offence seemed to be struggling to find their groove, also. The Hurricane defense picked off Atkins during a key drive halfway through the quarter, but both teams struggled to introduce themselves to the endzone. That was, until, just before the halftime break. From just around the 5 yard line, Atkins handed the ball to Bowlin, who drove the ball in for the first score of the game. A missed extra point took the Patriots in to halftime ahead of the Hurricanes 6-0.

The third quarter came, and it was like an awakening for the offense on both sides of the ball. Just over a minute in to the quarter, the Hurricanes, who received the kickoff for the half, drove the ball in to the endzone for the first score of the half. The good extra point pulled Morristown East ahead of the Patriots for the first time in the game, with a score of 7-6. Jefferson County had a very good answer to that problem on the next drive, with a 36 yard scramble by Atkins, the Patriots set themselves up to score once again. A handoff to Seth Parrot allowed him to introduce himself to the endzone for the first time this season. Jefferson County went for two successfully, as a toss to Devin Jackson made it look easy, and the Patriots were up 14-7.

Photo by Angie Stanley, Jefferson County Post Sports

Not to be taken lightly, the Hurricanes were quick to answer the drive with one of their own. Within the next drive, Morristown East tied things up once again, with a touchdown drive and a successful extra point. The Patriots struggled to get the ball back down the field, and the Hurricanes got the ball back in to their hands. Within three minutes of their previous score, the Morristown East Hurricanes pulled ahead of the Jefferson County Patriots for just a brief period of time, 21-14.

The nail-biting continued for fans, as in the very next possession, the Patriots scored once again. Set up by a solid pass from Atkins to Mason Ledford, the next snap was scrambled in to the endzone by Atkins for another Patriot touchdown. This time the extra point was good, and the game was tied 21-all going in to the fourth quarter.

The action continued in to the fourth quarter, as both defenses manned up to prevent the offense from getting the advantage. Finally, with just 5:33 left in the game, the Jefferson County Patriots broke through the eyewall to bring the score back to their advantage, 27-21. Jefferson County was not in the clear just yet, but the defensive wall prevented the Hurricanes from making landfall, and forced Morristown East to hand over the ball for the final time.

Photo by Angie Stanley, Jefferson County Post Sports

As the Patriots final drive of the game was moving smoothly, with Atkins taking a knee and running the clock down, the storm, apparently, between the two teams knocked out the lights with under a minute left in the game, but play continued. The Jefferson County Patriots defeated the Morristown East Hurricanes 27-21, as The Riot chanted “WE WANT WEST!”

Up Next for the Jefferson County Patriots, they will be hosting the Morristown West Trojans in Dumplin Valley. The last time the two faced-off the Patriots suffered a close loss dealt by the Trojans 18-17. Kickoff will be at 7:00 p.m. instead of the usual 7:30, and there will be a special halftime presentation for the Jefferson County High School Lady Patriot Softball Team as they get their State Championship rings.

Source: Angie Stanley, Jefferson County Post Sports