The first shockwave of this football season was delivered by Bledsoe County, which steamrolled Class 2A's fourth-ranked Tyner 42-13 Friday night.
That ended a 20-game losing streak to Tyner and also snapped the Rams' 14-game Region 3-2A winning streak. The Warriors hadn't beaten Tyner since 1942 (a 14-12 win) and had come within single digits only twice during the losing skid, including a 25-21 defeat in 2016 and 6-0 in overtime in 1991.
"Once we got going, it just snowballed," Warriors coach Dewayne Tabor said. "The line did a good job, and the backs blocked well for each other. Once we were able to establish the run game, we were able to control the clock and our defense did a great job against a very talented team. Now hopefully our kids will believe we can play with anybody we face."
Following up on last year's eight-win finish, the Warriors improved to 3-0 overall and won the region opener thanks to an offense that rolled up 461 yards on 60 carries and a defense that limited the Rams (1-1, 0-1) to just 62 total yards and two first downs.
Both Tyner touchdowns came in the first quarter, the first on a short run that followed an interception return, followed later by a 99-yard kickoff return. Other than that it was all Warriors as quarterback Harmon Keith ran for 160 yards and a score, Cadillac Seiver ran for 133 and two touchdowns and Dylan Robeck added 93 yards and three scores.
* Baylor 55, Chattanooga Christian 14: The Red Raiders, who are ranked No. 5 in Division II-AAA, pulled away thanks to a 35-0 second-half run, which came after the Chargers had pulled within 19-14 in the third quarter.
"The big thing to remember is that we've had no scrimmages, no 7-on-7, no jamboree coming into this game," Baylor coach Phil Massey said. "It wasn't just the season opener, it was the first time we've lined up against somebody else since last year, so with seven new starters on defense, this was all brand new to them."
Chattanooga Christian put together an impressive opening drive that was capped by Jamichael Baxter's one-yard touchdown. Baylor countered with a quick scoring drive of its own and tied the game on a 13-yard receiver screen pass from Neyland Jean to Elijah Howard.
After their defense held, the Red Raiders put together a 16-play, 95-yard drive, converting third-and-27 and third-and-16 along the way before Howard scored on a 2-yard run. Another defensive stand was followed by a 36-yard touchdown pass from Jean to Carson Yates for a 19-7 halftime advantage.
The Chargers showed a lot of fight by opening the second half with a touchdown that pulled them within five, but Baylor quickly countered with a long scoring run by Caleb Hampton and then began to pull away. Traveon Scott led the Chargers with 113 rushing yards.
Howard 21, Middle Tennessee Christian 14: The Hustlin' Tigers rallied with two fourth-quarter touchdowns, followed by a critical fourth-down stop by Dayvon Thomas to earn the nonregion win. Trailing 14-7 going into the fourth, Howard got a 3-yard scoring run by Jermichael Young to tie the game, then a 5-yard TD from Willie Owens with just more than four minutes remaining.
Owens also had an interception and JaCobi Dixon picked off two passes for the Hustlin' Tigers. Marcus Reed's 80 rushing yards led Howard, which ran for 234 as a team, and Courtney Walker also scored.
East Hamilton 38, East Ridge 26: The Hurricanes overcame not having starting quarterback Haynes Eller, who had to sit out one game due to COVID-19 contact tracing. In his absence, Jeremiah Flemmons stepped in to rush for two scores and threw for another to Kaunyae Burgans in the Region 2-4A win. Juandrick Bullard also ran for a touchdown for the fourth-ranked Hurricanes (3-0, 1-0).
Marion County 49, Polk County 0: The Warriors scored twice in each of the first three quarters in rolling to the Region 3-2A road win. Marion County outgained the Wildcats 464-104 in total offense, with 423 of that coming on the ground. Rylee Rogers ran for 118 yards and a TD, and Taye Hutchins added 116 and two scores for the Warriors (3-0, 1-0), who used 10 ball carriers.
South Pittsburg 55, Lookout Valley 6: A 28-point second quarter, highlighted by a 16-yard scoring connection from Brayden Sanders to Reggie Hunter, got the top-ranked Pirates rolling for the Region 3-1A win. Senior Hunter Frame ran for 143 yards and four TDs as the Pirates (3-0, 1-0) outgained the Jackets 300-189 in total yards.
Lookout Valley quarterback Blake Ferguson scored on an 87-yard run, the first points the Pirates have allowed this season.
Meigs County 46, Cumberland Gap 0: The Tigers led 13-0 before their offense ever stepped on the field thanks to a pair of interceptions returned for scores by Ben Smith and Cam Huckabey. Meigs County, ranked No. 2 in Class 2A, held Cumberland Gap to minus-6 yards of total offense, led by Smith's five tackles for loss, two sacks and 10 total tackles.
Will Meadows led the Tigers' offense with 141 rushing yards on 10 carries with three TDs, and he also caught a 29-yard scoring pass.
Copper Basin 47, Sale Creek 0: Junior running back Sebastian Balilies ran for 259 yards on 27 carries and scored three TDs to lead the Cougars to the Region 3-1A win.
Anderson County 42, Hixson 0: Despite some nice runs from scrimmage by Niykee Logan, the Wildcats were no match for Anderson County. The Wildcats fell to 0-3 overall, 0-1 in Region 2-4A.
Maryville 34, Cleveland 7: Playing away from home against the 2019 Class 6A state champs, Destun Thomas caught a touchdown for the Blue Raiders and Tetoe Boyd ran the ball well.
Soddy-Daisy 56, Lenoir City 23: Trojans quarterback Isaac Barnes threw for five touchdowns in front of the home fans, and Rhett Sottlemire and Braden Dodd each returned interceptions for scores for the Trojans.
Other area scores: Bradley Central 42, Maryville Heritage 7; Loudon 35, Brainerd 18; Knoxville Webb 45, Boyd Buchanan 28; Ooltewah 38, William Blount 21; Sequatchie County 46, Cannon County 0; York Institute 6, Grundy County 3; Central 15, Sequoyah 7; Bell Buckle Webb 39, Grace Academy 26; Sweetwater 41, McMinn Central 6.