Patriots Sneak Past Trojans 28-20

For the first time since 2003, Jefferson County High School Football has started their season 3-0. To give some perspective, the last time the Patriots have started a season so well, sophomore Ayden Houston’s dad was on the JCHS squad as a senior.

The first real test on Jefferson County High School’s schedule happened Thursday night, as they faced off against the Morristown West High School Trojans, a team they haven’t defeated since 2007. The last time the Trojans lost in Dandridge? 2004.

The Patriots were the first to strike, after a long drive, Jefferson County scrambled in from the redzone with a short toss from Tanner Adkins to Josh Miller. The extra point was blocked.

The Trojans struggled to move the ball against the Patriot defense through much of the first half of the game. Late in the first quarter, though, Morristown West managed to get in to field goal range, and got on to the board with a 27-yarder that hit the goal post but managed to go in. At the end of the first quarter, the Patriots were up 6-3.

The second quarter proved to even more of a struggle for the Morristown West offense, who struggled to get in the red zone, let alone the endzone. Jefferson County did make it in to the endzone, after a 62 yard run by Kade Parker, but the run was called back because of an illegal blindside block by Miller. After that, both teams struggled to move the ball for the remainder of the half, and the Patriots went in to the halftime break ahead of the Morristown West Trojans, 6-3.

Something must have awakened during the halftime break. Perhaps it was the Lady Patriots Softball Team receiving their state championship rings, but both teams came on to the field ready to continue to battle it out.

The third quarter continued to be very one ended for the Patriots. The Trojans were limited to just a field goal in the time period as Jefferson County continued to dominate the offensive side of the ball. With just over 6 minutes left in the third, Tanner Atkins scooted in to the endzone from 19 yards out, plus a good two point attempt, the Patriots were up 14-3. Just five minutes of play time later, the Patriots would score again, after a Trojan field goal.

Then the fourth quarter happened. After coming to the period with a 20-6 lead, and preventing the Trojans from entering the endzone for the majority of the game, the Patriot defenses finally wore down.

Morristown West introduced themselves to the endzone for the first time early in the fourth quarter, witch closed the Patriots lead gap to 20-13. The next drive found the Patriots deep in to their own territory. A botched snap that was dropped, recovered by the Morristown West defense, in the endzone, ended up being a Trojan touchdown. A good extra point tied up this game midway through the fourth, 20-20.

The Patriots regained their composure, though, and managed to pull ahead just on the next drive. The already successful Atkins – Houston combo drove in to the endzone with just 4 minutes left in the game. Houston would then drive in a two point conversion, giving the Patriots the 8 point advantage. The Patriot defense, also looking more poised at the end of the game, managed to hold their own, and the Jefferson County Patriots won 28-20 against the Morristown West Trojans.

The win puts Jefferson County 1-0 in conference play.

Next week the Jefferson County Patriots start a three game away streak as they travel to Knoxville to West High School. This is the first time the two teams have met. West has also started their season 3-0, against Bearden, Karns, and Farragut.