Skip to content Skip to left sidebar Skip to right sidebar Skip to footer

Cyclones blow past Longhorns 42-13

By Tim Chambers
Tomahawk Sports Editor
[email protected]

ELIZABETHTON— There was nothing fishy about Elizabethton’s performance against Johnson County on Friday night inside of Browns-Childress Stadium. The Longhorns got “schooled” 42-13 by the Cyclones with its prize catch leading the way.
Ethan Thomas scored four touchdowns and rushed for 182 yards enabling ‘Betsy to remain in a first place tie with Sullivan South at 4-0 for the conference lead. Johnson County (3-1, 4-4) drops to third place and will host the 10th ranked Rebels at home on Friday.
“They’ve got a good football team with a lot of players that can beat you,” said Longhorns’ head coach Don Kerley. “They’re good enough to win the state. We moved the ball well at times but couldn’t get it in. I was proud of our second half effort because the kids could have quit but they didn’t.  We’ll try and build from that.”
Elizabethton “built” a 21-point first quarter advantage and never looked back.
It took them eight plays to go 60 yards and score on their first possession.

Markus Olds reeled in an 11-yard touchdown pass from Caleb Armstrong making it 7-0 after the PAT.
Thomas did the honors on their next drive by taking it to the house from 35-yards out extending it to 14-0.
And the highly talented major college recruit was just getting started.
He tacked on another seven-yard touchdown run to make it 21-0. The biggest play on that drive was a 41-yard pass completion from Armstrong to Jaylen Smith.
A nice return by Alex Trussler on the ensuing kickoff gave the ‘Horns good field position at the 45.
Warren Kerley’s 13-yard touch pass to Greg Roark highlighted a 10-play, 55-yard scoring march and drew them closer at 21-6.
But they couldn’t slow down the Cyclones who would steal back the momentum moments later.
Thomas squirted free for a 27-yard touchdown run which padded their cushion at 28-6. Then Christian Glover picked off Kerley’s pass deep inside Johnson County territory to halt what couldn’t have been their second touchdown drive.
Thomas continued his “Burger King-like” performance by piling up some “Whopper” numbers and having it his way.
His 17-yard touchdown run on their very next possession made it 35-6 after Logan Birchfield’s fifth PAT. Caleb Jones tacked on a 41-yard TD run up the gut to make it 42-6 at intermission.
“It was important to put points on the board because Johnson County’s a good team that can run and throw,” said Elizabethton’s head coach Shawn Witten. “We needed some challenges in the secondary so we tried to get them out of the wing-T and make them throw. We forced two turnovers and stopped them on fourth down a few times. Our defense stepped up and played huge.”
Johnson County showed heart by winning the second half battle. And what appeared to be a missed call cost them a touchdown on their first drive to start the third quarter.
Facing fourth and goal at the one and a half, Jordan Grubb appeared to extend the football well beyond the goal line after some surge by Johnson County’s offensive line. But the side judges ruled he didn’t get in allowing Elizabethton to take over at the one-foot line.

Johnson County scored the half’s lone touchdown on Cody Bailie’s eight-yard touchdown reception from Kerley with 6:45 remaining in the fourth quarter. Aaron Osborne’s 50-yard catch and run came two plays prior to the score.
The two teams combined for 790 yards of total offense in the game.
Elizabethton complied 316 on the ground and 174 through the air.
Johnson County produced 311, including 230 passing yards.

To read the entire article, pick up a copy of this week's Tomahawk.