The Chattanooga Time-Free Press Best of Preps High School Football Jamboree concluded on Saturday evening with six more 20-minute scrimmages at Finley Stadium.
Next stop, the regular season.
Two-point conversion stop lifts Walker Valley
Senior running back Gabe Cartwright broke a 41-yard touchdown run to cap off Walker Valley’s six-play, 70-yard scoring drive on the game’s first series, and the Mustangs held on for a 7-6 victory over Brainerd.
“We loooked good early, but we can’t be satisfied with one good drive, then come out sloppy on the next,” Walker Vallery head coach Ted Lockerby said. "We’ve got to be able to put back-to-back drives together and back-to-back defensive stops. Those are the things that we’ve got to do in order to get better.”
The Mustangs, winless in 2011, went three-and-out on their second possession, and the Panthers put together a six-play, 84-yard scoring drive. But a stop on Brainerd’s two-point conversion attempt kept Walker Valley out in front.
“We just told them to get after it,” Lockerby said. “They were playing a little soft, playing a little high, and we just told them ‘let’s get a stop and get out of here; just play like we expect you to play.’”
Grace cruises past East Ridge
Golden Eagles running back Will Slack carried four times for 47 yards and a touchdown to lead Grace to a 13-0 victory over East Ridge.
East Ridge running back Alston Toran broke loose on 48-yard scamper on the game’s first play, but it was negated because of a holding call. Two plays later, another long run was called back, and the Pioneers’ offense never seemed to recover.
“We’ve still got a lot of work to do, but I think it was a good showing for us,” Slack said. “We can do better, but it was good to show people and the fans that we can play.”
Senior quarterback Josh Smith hooked up with tight end Austin Powell in the end zone for Grace’s second touchdown, a play that was set up by an excellent play action fake to Slack.
“That’s the meaning of the play and my two breakout runs had them focusing on me,” Slack said. “It faked them out and we got the big play.”
Hixson squeaks by Silverdale
The Seahawks moved the ball 70 yards in 14 plays on the game’s first series, which ended in a successful quarterback sneak by senior Spencer Mossburg, but a long scoring drive by the Wildcats and a successful two-point conversion lifted Hixson to an 8-7 win.
“It was encouraging to see those kids come back,” Hixson head coach Jason Fitzgerald said. “In the past, when they get down it’s hard to get them to come back. They came right back and responded. I’m pleased.”
Junior quarterback Gill Brown connected with senior receiver Allante Novene on a 34-yard touchdown pass for Hixson’s only score, and the Wildcats defense forced two straight three-and-outs to seal the narrow victory.
Boyd Buchanan rolls over Notre Dame
There wasn't much the Buccaneers did wrong in their convincing win over the Fighting Irish as Boyd Buchanan ran all over Notre Dame en route to its 14-0 victory.
Junior quarterback Jim Cardwell led the way with 51 yards on four carries, including a 28-yard touchdown run, while senior Rance Harden racked up 39 yards on nine attempts.
“We executed on offense and defense, and the kids had great intensity and excitement,” Boyd Buchanan coach Grant Reynolds said. “We’ve got some great running backs and we’re going to use all of them. In a long season you’ve got to.”
The Fighting Irish couldn’t get anything going on the offensive side of the ball, failing to gain a single yard against the Buccaneers defense.
“I wanted to see our guys with some intensity from the opening whistle, and I saw that tonight,” Reynolds said.
Cleveland tops Howard
The Blue Raiders offense cashed in on two wide receiver screens on their opening drive, capping a three-play, 70-yard drive with a 25-yard strike which lifted Cleveland to a 7-0 victory.
“I thought we executed well and our receivers did a fine job,” Cleveland head coach Rob Crawford said. “We had a little leakage in pass protection but we were giving up quite a bit of size.”
Cleveland moved the ball just as efficiently on their second series, but the drive stalled inside the red zone and the Blue Raiders’ 21-yard field goal attempt was unsuccessful.
“We’ve got to do a better job in the red zone,” Crawford said. “We had the ball on the 1-yard-line on second down and we couldn’t put it in. Our kicking team didn’t execute very well either so we’ve still got a long way to go.”
East Hamilton comes from behind
Despite trailing 3-0 after the Franklin County’s first possession, the Hurricanes rallied to find the end zone and capture a 7-3 win.
The Rebels moved the ball 61 yards on the game’s opening series, but the Hurricanes defense held inside the red zone to force a field goal.
“(Franklin County) came out and did a good job; they were pretty polished,” East Hamilton head coach Ted Gatewood said. “We were a little discombobulated, and you can’t start a game like that. We got our feet under us eventually.”
On the offense’s first drive, the Seahawks had a 30-yard touchdown run by running back Logan Jackson negated because of a holding call, but East Hamilton eventually punched the ball in from the 1-yard-line on a quarterback sneak by junior Hunter Moore.