Chiefs' test difficulty amps up with Crockett visit

Douglas Fritz • Oct 11, 2019 at 1:00 PM

Cherokee aced the pop quizzes on its league schedule, but now it’s time for the semester exam.

The Chiefs will play host to the state’s fourth-ranked football team when David Crockett invades Rogersville for a first-place showdown in Region 1-5A.

Cherokee is 3-0 in the region while the Pioneers stand at 2-0. The Chiefs are 6-1 overall with their only loss coming against undefeated Elizabethton. Crockett is 5-0.

“They are tough to prepare for,” said Cherokee head coach Cody Baugh. “They are very skilled behind a solid offensive line. We will need to play a complete game to be successful.”

In other Region 1-5A encounters, Daniel Boone plays host to Volunteer while Tennessee High invites Cocke County to the Stone Castle.

David Crockett at Cherokee

The Pioneers haven’t played since a 49-7 pounding of Sullivan Central on Sept. 27.

“Coming off a bye week, we’ve had a good week of practice and the kids have been really tuned in,” said Crockett head coach Hayden Chandley, who has a career record of 17-1. “The bye week gave us an opportunity to get some kids healthy.”

Crockett is led by record-setting quarterback Cade Larkins, who has thrown for 1,563 yards and 21 touchdowns in five nights at the office this season. Receiver Prince Kollie is on a 1,000-yard receiving pace with 684 to go along with eight touchdowns.

The Chiefs counter with quarterback Collin Trent, who has accounted for 1,411 total yards and 23 touchdowns on the season.

“Trent is a good player and can beat you in more than one way,” said Chandley. “They go as he goes, and we will need to do a good job of gang tackling him.”

Jonas Leeper is Cherokee’s top receiving threat with 295 yards.

“He can make plays catching the deep ball or catching it short and making a play in the open field,” said Chandley.

Baugh said his team needs to stay out of long-yardage situations along with taking care of the football.

Volunteer (0-3, 2-4) at Boone (1-1, 2-4)

Both teams have navigated a tough schedule to this point with the Falcons playing CAK, Crockett, Cherokee and Tennessee High while the Trailblazers battled Sullivan South, Greeneville, Tennessee High, Elizabethton and Dobyns-Bennett.

However, Boone is still in a good spot in the region and in the mix for a home playoff game.

Boone head coach Jeremy Jenkins said his team must be disciplined against Volunteer’s offense.

“They have a lot of pre-snap movement on offense,” said Jenkins. “Alignment will be a key.”

Cocke County (0-2, 1-5) at Tennessee High (2-0, 5-1)

The Vikings have a chance to secure their first six-game winning streak since an 11-0 start in 2009.

They have scored at least 35 points in every game since a season-opening loss to Dobyns-Bennett, and Cocke County’s defense — which has allowed 33 or more points in four straight contests — doesn’t seem to present a stopping point for that run.

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