Blount Press Row
Don't Miss

Dynasty Continued, Dynasty Born

Maryville, Heritage deliver youth football Super Bowl sweeps

Christian Markham escapes the grasp of Alcoa’s Kvaughn Tyson during the Parks & Rec midget super bowl last Saturday at Maryville High School’s Shields Stadium. Photos by Jolanda Jansma

By Stefan Cooper
Blount Press Row

Maryville is still Maryville, but look at what Heritage is doing.

Heritage Indian Cole Roberts works hard for the yards against Friendsville.

The Maryville Lil’ Rebs and Heritage Indians claimed the National and American conference championships, respectively, at the Blount County Parks & Rec Grasshopper Super Bowl Tuesday night at Everett Recreation Center.

The victories capped a sweep for both programs from grasshopper to midget. For the Indians, it completes the transformation from Walland to Heritage in the team’s name to better integrate youth football with the high school. Heritage High coach Tim Hammontree was in attendance Saturday during last Saturday’s pee wee and midget super bowls at Maryville High School.

“What we ended up doing six years into it was changing it to Heritage,” Indians coach Jerry Teaster said. “We’re 100 percent behind them.”

Heritage celebrated championships in the American Conference pee wee and midget divisions last Saturday at Shields Stadium. Maryville’s Southerners and Rebs took the National Conference pee wee and midget titles the same afternoon.

Rockford's Bryson Richardson makes the stop on Kado Smith.

The Indians got a pair of touchdowns from Kado Smith and one each from Austin O’Conner and Kyle Headrick to outlast the Rockford Tigers, 27-25, for the National grasshopper title. Rockford answered with three touchdown sprints from Bryson Richardson of 45, 40 and 40 yards, with Jaydon Swiney adding a fourth on a 60-yard burst.

The difference proved two missed Tiger extra points, with Heritage consuming most of the fourth quarter to go the length of the field for the championship-winning touchdown with two minutes remaining.

Smith’s 8-yard run put the Indians over the top. O’Conner, Smith and Headrick ran for the three difference-making extra points.

The Lil’ Rebs held a 7-6 lead for much of the night before pulling away from Alcoa late for a 20-6 win in the National Conference title game.

Jackson Phillips tallied for the Lil’ Rebs, with Isaiah Bryant running 38 yards to answer for the Tornadoes to account for a 7-6 Maryville lead until a late surge blew it open. Phillips tacked on the point-after his 5-yard scoring run.

Maryville Southerner Graham Everett is pursued by Fairview's Cade Chambers.

Carter Cox put it away for Maryville on runs 10 and 4 yards in a tense, closing 12 minutes. The title was the ninth for the Lil’ Rebs and head coach David Hunt since the founding of the grasshopper division 13 years ago.

Blake Cooper rushed for three touchdowns as Heritage began the march to the sweep with a 31-0 win over Friendsville for the American Conference pee wee championship. Parker Rothery completed a touchdown pass to Spencer Williams for another Indian score.

Soon after, the Heritage midgets put the sweep in play. The Nic McCarter Show was in full effect, the Indians’ star running for all three touchdowns as Heritage made it back-to-back shutouts in a 19-0 win to turn back the new-look Friendsville Falcons.

The Falcons didn’t get the win, but receiver “Downtown” Eddie Brown had three of the game’s more memorable plays, including two interceptions and an amazing, acrobatic catch of a Hunter Gaylor pass while leaping and falling backwards.

"Downtown" Eddie Brown takes in the postgame ceremonies.

“I turned around and he threw it perfect to me,” Brown said.

Her big brother is just modest, Tory Brown said.

“He’s awesome at football,” she said.

Saturday’s championship game was the last with longtime mentor Tary Gaylor as Friendsville’s coach.

“I’m going to miss it, but, after 24 years, it’s time to do something else,” Gaylor said. “I just loved the kids and tried to be a good tutor.”

It’s a bit more than that, Tory Brown said.

“You will be missed,” she said as the public address announcer gave Gaylor a fitting sendoff.

This masked Tornado was undaunted by Tuesday night's frigid winds.

After dropping a close decision to Fairview’s Raiders during the regular season, the Maryville Southerners rolled in a big way, 33-6, in the National Conference pee wee championship game.

After a close first quarter, the Southerners reeled off five consecutive scores to blow it open, capped by a Graham Everett 60-yard burst. Everett scored three of Maryville’s touchdowns in the escape.

Don Sentell has had some strong teams as he closes in on his 50th year of coaching youth football, but wow!

Christian Markham put on a head-turning display of athleticism as the Maryville Rebs owned the National Conference midge title game, shutting out Alcoa 52-0.

Markham ran for two scores, returning an interception for a third. Running back Isaiah Cobb tacked on a pair of rushing scores for the Rebs.










One Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply