By Tim Chambers
BAILEYTON— Longhorn fans couldn’t shout the name “John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt” any quicker than Johnson County scored its first four touchdowns against North Greene. The Longhorns built a 28-0 advantage in the first eight minutes, then cruised to its 54-8 win at “The Tundra” on Friday night at Baileyton.
Head coach Don Kerley talked about starting fast and getting his reserves in the game. Nearly 40 kids had played before the first quarter ended.
“We got to play a lot of kids early and that was a good thing,” said Kerley. “We didn’t have a junior varsity game this week so they all wanted to play. The starters did well getting us a big lead early so we wanted to get through the game with no injuries. Unfortunately, we lost Jared and that’s some big shoes to fill. We’ll have to work on special teams a lot this week. He did a lot for our team.”
Kerley was making reference to sophomore Jared Kimble. He was the team’s starting punter and kicker and played a lot on defense. Kimble carried nine times for 100 yards against the Huskies before his leg injury. It’s reported that he will have surgery later in the week.
Johnson County’s first drive started at the 42 and took only three plays to reach pay dirt. Troy Arnold’s 15-yard TD run up the gut gave the Horns a 7-0 lead that ignited the fire.
Johnson County’s next score was set up by Nathan Lane’s interception at the 36. Troy Arnold would find the end zone from 34 yards out on the second play of the drive to increase the Horns’ lead at 14-0.
The Huskies continued to turn the ball over with a costly fumble on their third possession. Will Kerley recovered it for the Longhorns, setting up an 8-yard shuttle pass from Nathan Arnold to Gage Hampton with 6:09 still remaining in the first quarter.
North Greene went three and out on their next possession and Johnson County wasted no time getting their fourth score.
Hampton’s 13-yard run made it 28-0 with 4:33 remaining in the period after Kimble’s fourth PAT.
Kerley began emptying the bench at that point and it slowed down the score from there.
The Huskies got their lone score in the second quarter on a 2-yard run by Austin Kovacs and Briggs Kiker’s two-point conversion.
Johnson County led 34-8 at the half on Troy Arnold’s 14-yard touchdown run, his third of the game.
“We had fall break this week so we wanted to come out tonight and show we weren’t sluggish,” said Arnold. “We wanted to play every play as hard as we could and the outcome showed it. The line blocked very well and we all were hitting the holes. They gave me some wide spaces to run through.”
It didn’t get any better for North Greene in the third quarter.
Shane Greer took the opening kickoff 71 yards for a touchdown to start the third quarter. He credited Arnold for paving the way.
“I thought the kick might come my way,” said Greer. “I followed Troy and he made me a good block. I saw open field once I got past that.”
North Greene failed to move the football when it got possession, allowing the Horns to reel off another touchdown run.
Kimble broke loose for a 22-yard-run after having a 34-yard TD called back due to a block in the back. Kerley continued playing numerous players and a couple got in on the scoring.
Jisaiah Webster scored from four yards out to make it 47-8 with 5:50 still showing in the third.
Curtis Lowe scored the final TD on a 9-yard run in the fourth quarter. Jimmy Bower booted the PAT to close out the Longhorns’ scoring.
The statistics were scattered like birdseed due to the multiple players that logged minutes.
Troy Arnold carried seven times for 80 yards and three scores. Hampton added 50 yards on two carries and a TD.
Hayden Osborne collected seven tackles, a sack to lead the defense in limited play. Jordan Edes-King added six tackles. Will Kerley collected four tackles and had a fumble recovery. Josh Widener had collected four tackles in his reserve role. Sam Kerley, R.J. Snyder, Nathan Mink and Stacey Greer collected three apiece. Nathan Lane had the lone interception.
It gets much tougher for the Longhorns in their final two games. They square off with the state’s ninth ranked team in 1-A Cloudland at home on Friday and Unicoi County at home the following week.
“We close the regular season out with two big games,” said Kerley about the Highlanders and Blue Devils. “Cloudland is a rival game that we definitely want to win and beating Unicoi will give us the conference championship. We’ve got a lot left to play for. We’ll have to play well in both games to stay undefeated.”
JC—T. Arnold 15 run (Kimble kick) 8:50
JC—T. Arnold 34 run (Kimble kick) 7:32
JC—Hampton 8 pass from N. Arnold (Kimble kick) 6:09
JC—Hampton 13 run (Kimble kick) 4:33
NG—Kovacs 2 run (Kiker run) 6:05
JC—T. Arnold 14 run (run failed) 2:21
JC—S. Greer 71 kickoff return (Kimble kick) 11:48
JC—Webster 4 run (kick failed) 5:50
JC—Lowe 9 run (Bower kick) 3:30
1st Downs JC 15 NG 5
Rushing yards JC 311 NG 24-25
Passes A/C/I JC 5-5-0 NG 3-8-1
Passing Yards JC 76 NG 48
Total Offense JC 387 NG 73
Fumbles JC 0-0 NG 1-1
Punts JC 0-0 NG 3-29
Penalties JC 10-91 NG 5-35
Individual Stats (Johnson County Only)
Rushing: JC— Kimble 9-100, T. Arnold 7-80, Hampton 2-50, Webster 5-32, Rawls 5-31, Lowe 4-11, Ortega 1-5, Lunceford 1-1
Passing: JC—N. Arnold 3-3-0 36, T. Arnold 1-1-0 12, St. Greer 1-1-0 28
Receiving: JC—Henson 1-28, Sh. Greer 1-15, Eller 1-13, Lowe 1-12, Hampton 1-8.
Sacks: JC—Osborne, W. Kerley
Fumble Recoveries: W. Kerley
Tackles (6 or more): Johnson County only, Norris 14, Osborne 12, Snyder 10, Herman 8, W. Kerley 8, Clawson 7, Edes-King 7, Lane 6, Eller 6.