Tennessee High shut down the Boone offense Friday night and the Vikings rolled to a 35-0 victory in the Region 1-5A opener for both teams at Nathan Hale Stadium.
With Cole, their star running back, on the sideline with a broken arm — his arm is in a cast covering from his wrist almost to his shoulder — the Trailblazers had trouble moving the ball. Boone managed just 109 total yards, only 44 on the ground.
“We’ve played without Charlie before the last two years, so there’s no excuse,” 16th-year Boone coach Jeremy Jenkins said. “It’s next man up. We just got whipped in the line of scrimmage. That’s a good football team. We didn’t move the ball at all to start, got down 14-0 against an athletic front like they have, and they got after us.”
Boone fell to 1-2 overall, 0-1 in the region. Tennessee High, which opened with a loss to Dobyns-Bennett, improved to 1-1, 1-0.
Joe Jones, starting in Cole’s spot, never got going. Jones was unable to get outside to use his notable speed and was held to three yards on eight carries.
Without a running game, the Trailblazers couldn’t put together any consistent drives.
Meanwhile, Jaden Keller had two touchdowns in the first half and sparked a second-half surge with a long kickoff return.
Cole McBrayer, Tennessee High’s senior quarterback, passed for a touchdown and ran for another.
“We hadn’t played in two weeks and we were hungry,” Tennessee High coach Mike Mays said. “We made some adjustments and our defense really played well.”
Cole was the big name missing, but the Trailblazers had some other key injured players out.
Boone also played without running back-linebacker Devon White, whose thumb was in a cast. Lineman Chandler Masters and a few others were also out.
A key play happened with 3:38 left in the second quarter. As Tennessee High was nursing a 7-0 lead, Boone’s Clayton Moorehouse dropped back in punt formation. The Vikings brought pressure. Moorehouse barely had time to get the ball off before he was swamped. The kick never got past the line of scrimmage.
That gave Tennessee High the ball in Boone territory and it led to Keller’s second touchdown, a 2-yard run that put the Vikings up 14-0.
The touchdown was set up by a 21-yard pass play from McBrayer to Isaiah Smith. Keller had earlier scored on a 10-yard touchdown in the first quarter.
Keller opened the second half doing something rare. He returned the kickoff 97 yards and didn’t score. It gave the Vikings the ball at the Boone 2-yard line and two plays later McBrayer took it in for a 21-0 lead.
McBrayer hit Smith on a 43-yard touchdown pass midway through the third quarter for a 28-0 lead and Kelvin Coleman added a 4-yard touchdown run for a 35-0 advantage with still two minutes remaining in the third quarter.
After a running clock began, neither team scored in the fourth quarter.