By COLLIN BROOKS
It’s been a while since Daniel Boone has had the opportunity to enter any contest with a record of 3-1, but it’s been even longer since they defeated Science Hill.
Boone hasn’t topped Science Hill (2-2) since 2010 when they grabbed a 28-14 victory. The last time that Daniel Boone had more than three wins heading into their contest against the Toppers was 2012, a year when they finished 8-3, but lost to Science Hill 17-0 in week seven.
Even worse is the Blazers record against Science Hill coach Stacey Carter, who holds 5-1 record against Boone, and 12-1 overall with his time at Sullivan South.
None of those things seem to be relevant though as the Blazers enter this contest playing some of the best football they’ve played in the past few years.
“We are looking forward to this game and our kids are really excited,” Jenkins said. “We are playing well and we haven’t beat them since 2010. We consider them to be one of our big three rivals — with Sullivan South and David Crockett — and our kids are playing with a lot of confidence right now.”
The Toppers got all they could handle when they traveled to Elizabethton during the second week of the season, eventually topping the Cyclones 28-21 in double overtime.
The Blazers seemed to have Elizabethton on the ropes, despite an injury to their starting quarterback Noah Shelton early in the contest during week four before they finally succumbed to the Cyclones 14-6 two weeks ago.
Shelton returned to the Blazer lineup last week and looked like he hadn’t missed a beat. He also had the help of freshman Charlie Cole who gained 151 yards on the ground on 14 carries.
The Blazers will have to try and keep the Toppers speedsters in front of them to hope to have a chance. That starts with Science Hill quarterback Jaylen Adams, who has been more lethal with his legs (259 yards) than his arm (227 yards) through the first few games of this season.
Another speedster for the Toppers is Ahmik Watterson. The sophomore has carried the ball 54 times for 569 yards and is averaging a staggering 142 yards per contest.
“They have a dynamic quarterback that will line up in numerous positions, so we have to recognize where he is at all times,” Jenkins said. “For us, our best defense would be to keep the ball and sustain drives.”
Senior Colby Martin and Tate Overbay are the wide receivers that pose a threat for the Toppers as Martin has hauled in nine catches for 125 yards, while Overbay has brought in eight receptions for 126 yards.
The Toppers gave Maryville all they could handle for the first half last week, going into the locker room down 14-7, but eventually falling 35-14.
On defense, the Toppers have Bryson Tolley at linebacker and Nakiya Smith. Tolley has 41 tackles this year with five tackles for loss and one sack. Smith racked up a career high 10 tackles last week.
“They are an extremely talented team on both sides of the ball so we have to execute on offense and tackle well,” Jenkins said.
It will be homecoming for the Toppers with kickoff set for 7:30 p.m.