TSSAA Class 2A final
TYNER RAMS (12-2) vs. UNION CITY GOLDEN TORNADOES (12-2) at TUCKER STADIUM, COOKEVILLE, TENN.
Storyline: This is a rematch of the 2A state championship game from 20 years ago, which was Tyner's most recent appearance in a title matchup. The Rams scored late to win 13-10 in 1997, but the only thing that remains the same is coach Wayne Turner leading Tyner. Union City has made several return trips to the championship game — winning it all in 2009, 2013 and 2014 — with a similar simplistic game plan each time. The Golden Tornadoes are not fancy, rarely throwing the ball while running the triple-option veer out of the I-formation, but they are certainly effective. With four senior OL up front, this season Union City has scored an average of 39 points per game and has rushed for 5,895 yards — an average of 421 per game — led by FB Trey Jones (6-foot, 230 pounds) who has 2,248 yards and 28 TDs. He is the program's single-season rushing leader, with 10 games of more than 100 yards this year. Three other Union City players have rushed for more than 700 yards this season, including QB Braxton Waddell (5-11, 200), who has 1,457 yards and 22 TDs, FB Kaleb Craig (836 yards) and Conner Hurt (719). Also a LB, Craig is one of the team's leading tacklers (68.5 solo stops). The Golden Tornadoes have completed only 12 passes for 250 yards all season, and turnovers have been a problem (20 lost fumbles). Tyner has won 12 straight games, 11 of those by double figures, and is much more balanced on offense. The Rams are led by senior QB Jaylen Bowens, who has thrown for 1,050 yards and rushed for nearly 500 with 21 total TDs. He also has picked off seven passes on defense. Senior RB Jeremy Elston has more than 1,200 rushing yards and sophomore WR Jeremiah Batiste has more than 800 receiving, while FB Tyon Young is a load in short-yardage situations and ran for 106 yards last week. On the other side of the ball for Tyner, Tracy Justice leads the area with 19 sacks and has 29 tackles for loss, while fellow DE Tyrique Henry has 15 sacks and 23 tackles for loss.