By Ed Greif
The Rhea County Golden Eagles showed no mercy in their dominance over Jets with a 63-7 District 6AAA victory Friday night on the new artificial field at the Evensville school.
Rhea County extended their winning streak to 17 games over the Jets, which last beat the Golden Eagles 29-17 in 1984. The hosts now lead the series 23-5 and have outscored CCHS 779 to 186, with the 63 points the most ever against the Jets since a 57-0 victory in 1987.
Rhea County scored eight offensive touchdowns and one on defense, while compiling 357 yards total offense (139 rushing and 218 passing) and holding the Jets to 80 total yards offense (zero yards rushing and 80 yards passing).
The hosts scored on six first half offensive possessions and one on defense for a 56-0 halftime lead and added their final score in the second half to score their most points in a game in school history.
After short kickoff return to the Golden Eagle 42, drove the distance in five plays to score on a nine-yard run by Demitrius Patterson. Wyatt Maeriki converted the PAT for a 7-0 advantage with 10 minutes left in the quarter.
CCHS took over a their 20, but a penalty pushed the ball back to the 15. Tyler Norris picked up seven yards on first and 15; however, the ball was fumbled, with Bryce Keylon recovering the ball and raced 22 yards for a Golden Eagle score with 9:46 left in the first quarter. Demitrius Patterson scored the two-point conversion for a 15-0 lead.
After holding the Jets to three plays and out, Rhea County forced a Jet punt, which was returned 29 yards by Noel Patterson to the Jet 31-yard line. One play later, quarterback Austin Dotson passed Noel Patterson for a TD and a 21-0 lead. The PAT was good for a 22-0 lead with 6:59 left in the quarter.
Another three-play and out by the Jets gave Rhea County the ball at the Rhea County 39. Five plays later, Dotson passed 40 yards to Noel Patterson for a aTD and a 28-0 lead. The PAT made it 29-0 with 3:01 left in the quarter.
On the second possession of the Jets' next possesion, quarterback Jordan Buckner was sacked, but fumbled. Jonathan Shoemake recovered at the Jet five to set up a five-yard run by Joby Berry with 2:08 remaining in the quarter for a 35-0 lead. The two-point conversion was snuffed out the Jet defense.
After the ensuing kick sailed into the end zone, the Jets took over at their 20.
Buckner completed five of five passes for 51 yards and Dorian Holt carried once for two yards to move the ball the Rhea County 37 as the first quarter ended.
Colton Dykes had three catches for 37 yards, Caleb Charles had one reception for seven yards and Ty Tabor had one for seven yards. However, the drive was stopped on downs at the Golden Eagle 21, after a Buckner to Charles pass came up short for a first down.
On the first play, Dotson hit Demitrius Patterson on an 82-yard bomb for a TD with 8:35 left in the half for a 41-0 lead. The PAT made it 42-0.
CCHS picked up one first down on the next possession, but a penalty and an interception by York gave Rhea County the ball at the Jet 36.
Rhea County would drive the distance in seven plays to take a 48-0 lead with 2:54 left in the half on a 13-yard run by York. The PAT made it 49-0. York carried three times for 19 yards.
A Buckner pass to start the next possession was picked off by Rhea County, but was whistled off on a pass interference penalty on the Golden Eagles; however, the Jets were held to three-plays and out.
Rhea County took over a their 49 and flew the distance in five plays to score on a 17-yard pass from Dotson to Demetrius Patterson for a 55-0 lead with 11 seconds left in the half. Dotson was three for four passing for 50 yards. The PAT made it 56-0.
CCHS ran one offensive play, before time expired in the half.
All but 13 yards of the Golden Eagles 357 total yards came in the first half, while CCHS had 73 total yards offense in the first half.
Leading tacklers for the Jets were Seth Randall, Chace Marshall, Norris, Kobe Cox, Dykes, Nolan McClain, P.J. Marquez and Tyler Cantrell. Cox had a quarterback sack for the Jets.
With the scoring deficit of 56 points, the TSSAA mercy rule went into effect in the second half, as the 2- minute second half was played in less than 30 minutes.
Rhea County completed their scoring with a 15-yard run by Demitrius Patterson with 4:10 left in the third quarter for a 62-0 lead. The PAT made 63-0.
CCHS scored on a seven-yard pass from Buckner to Dykes to cap a seven-play, 71-yard drive. Gene Cravens booted the PAT to avert the shutout to make the score 63-7.
Rhea County rushed for 13 yards on 11 carries in the second half with just one first quarter.
CCHS completed three of four passes for 21 yards, while rushing for minus 14 yards on nine carries with two first downs.
Leading tacklers for the Jets in the second half were McClain, Trey McCloud, Marshall, Dykes, Justin McElroy and Cantrell.
Cumberland County (0-4) travels to York Insitute Friday night. York was shut out 34-0 by Smith County last Friday.