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Battle of Stones River

Rebels hold off Siegel in semifinal epic to reach BlueCross Bowl

Maryville’s T.J. Kimble comes down with a tough grab during Friday’s Class 6A semifinal win. Photos by Jolanda Jansma

By Stefan Cooper
Blount Press Row

Murfreesboro – Jim Gaylor stood bent over at the waist, the Maryville defensive coordinator resting his eyeglasses on his right knee.

The Rebel backfield of Shawn Prevo (22), Nick Myers (11) and Trenton Shuler attacks at the Siegel defense.

Hang in there, coach. The decision to move Brian Coulter was a real beauty.

Not far from the site of one of the most savage battles in Civil War history, T.J. Kimble’s touchdown catch with a minute remaining lifted Maryville to a 47-43 win over Siegel in a Class 6A semifinal Friday night.

“Once I saw (the safety) come up, I knew I could get behind him,” Kimble said. “When the ball was in the air, I said, ‘Lord, please let me catch this.’”

The two-time defending champion Rebels (14-0) advance to meet Whitehaven (14-0) in next Saturday’s BlueCross Bowl at Tennessee Tech’s Tucker Stadium.

Whitehaven eliminated Mt. Juliet, 41-35, on Friday.

Kickoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. EST.

“It was just a great high school football game,” Maryville head coach George Quarles said. “I’m proud of our kids. It’s an exciting night.”

The offenses for both teams dispensed a frightful beating on a night Siegel senior and Mr. Football finalist Brent Stockstill passed for 372 yards and four touchdowns with no interceptions – all while playing on a torn ACL.

“It was frustrating,” Gaylor said. “The quarterback got it to them and put it on the money. When it came to the fourth quarter, we outplayed them.”

Tae Martin collects a Siegel touchdown over the outstretched arms of Marcus Brooks.

Maryville senior Nick Myers, like Stockstill, a lefty, passed for 257 yards on 23 of 30 attempts with the winning, 28-yard toss to Kimble.

The Rebels won the ground war, with junior Shawn Prevo (19 carries 113 yards, three touchdowns) and senior Trenton Shuler (65 yards) powering Maryville to a 225-118 advantage.

Rebel lineman Brad Fields’ game-long duel with Siegel goliath John A. Simpson – 6-foot-6, 223 pounds – was compelling theatre for the duration.

That withstanding, Stockstill’s last six passes fell incomplete in the closing minutes. Gaylor’s decision to move Coulter from safety to corner the last 10 minutes of the fourth quarter had a lot to do with the why.

“We moved Coulter to the side the receiver was hurting us, and that helped,” Gaylor said.

Siegel wide out Tae Martin caught eight of Stockstill’s passes for 246 yards and three touchdowns, the last a 74-yard scorcher with 10:49 remaining, lifting the Stars to a 43-35 lead.

Moving Coulter to cornerback stopped the bleeding.

“He’s got that quick inside step on the stop-and-go,” Coulter said. “I just tried to get up on him and be parallel.”

On a night neither team would punt more than once and the Rebels lost linebacker Dylan Shinsky to a broken leg, four additional stands proved difference-makers.

Prevo ran for 113 yards and three scores to aid the Rebels.

Shinsky was stabilized at a Murfreesboro hospital overnight and will undergo surgery to repair a broken fibula on Tuesday.

Will Murrin’s fourth-and-8 tackle stuffed a Siegel drive at the Maryville 21 with seven minutes to play in the half, the game locked in a 14-14 tie.

With the Stars in third-and-2 at the Rebel 10 seven seconds to play until intermission, the Maryville defense stiffened to limit Siegel to a Harrison Reed 25-yard field goal.

Chancellor Coates not only blocked a Siegel second-half extra point, the Rebel defensive back recovered a Stars fumble of the second half kickoff at the Siegel 28-yard line.

Prevo made it 28-24 Maryville on a 10-yard run four plays later.

With four minutes to play, Rebel senior Taylor Spivey’s sack finally let some air out of the Siegel passing game.

Through it all in the closing minutes, Myers, Kimble and Carroll continued to throw and catch on the sideline.

“We believed in our defense,” Kimble said. “We wanted to stay warm because the defense was going to give us a chance.”

Chancellor Coates sails in to block a Siegel point-after.

The first three quarters were largely a blur of scoring.

Maryville went 68 yards in 10 plays on the game’s opening possession, Prevo’s 9-yard run giving the Rebels a 7-0 lead that lasted less than two mintues. Siegel was even in nine plays, Stockstill firing 37 yards to Martin to knot the score.

The Stars intercepted a Myers pass at the Maryville 35 a possession later. Denzel Harding scored from a yard away seven plays later for a 14-7 Siegel lead. The Rebels came right back with an 11-play drive, receiver Cody Carroll finding the Siegel end zone from 25 yards on a reverse after a block from Kimble downfield.

Harding’s 30-yard burst made it 21-14 Siegel with three minutes to play in the half. Prevo smashed in from 6 yards for a 21-21 tie a possession later. Reed’s boot with four seconds left gave the Stars a 24-21 lead at the half.

“Coach Quarles told us things aren’t always going to go our way and we just have to fight through,” Coates said.

The Rebels and Stars combined for four touchdowns in a wild third quarter: Prevo 10-yard run for Maryville; Harding 34-yard touchdown catch for the Stars; Myers 3-yard run to make it 35-31 Rebels with four minutes left in the third; Martin’s 45-yard scoring grab put Siegel back out front, 37-35, after the Coates block to start the fourth.

Kimble played the hero for Maryville with nine catches for 126 yards and the winning touchdown with a minute remaining.

Myers drove the Rebels 63 yards in five plays for the game-winning points, firing first to Carroll for 12 yards, tight end Logan Winders for 9 and Prevo for 8 more before keeping himself to the Siegel 28-yard line.

“We really wanted to win this game,” Prevo said. “He (Myers) made sure we all knew what to do. He led us all the way down the field.”

The game-winning pass arced perfectly to Kimble behind the Siegel secondary, leaving the speedy Maryville receiver with only one thing left to do.

























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