The Clinton Dragons handled their business Friday night, cruising past visiting Cherokee, 54-12, in front of a packed house at Dragon Stadium.
Clinton came into the game still smarting from their loss at Oak Ridge the previous week, but if there were any lingering effects from that defeat, the Dragons got over them quickly, scoring on the game’s opening possession and never looking back.
Two minutes into the game, CHS (3-1) capped off it’s game-opening drive with a 16-yard pass to Wesley Phillips from Josh Keith, the first of five scoring strikes by the Dragons’ signal-caller on the night. Clinton’s defense forced a punt on the ensuing possession, and Jeremiah Lee returned the offering 62 yards for a touchdown and a 13-0 lead after the extra point attempt went awry. The first quarter scoring was capped by Keith’s second touchdown toss of the night, a 41-yarder to Lucas Kendall that, with the extra point, made it 20-0 after one quarter.
Cherokee got on the board with a Joe Henley one-yard touchdown run 42 seconds into the second quarter, but missed the extra point.
Later in the second quarter, Jawan Goins scored the first of his two rushing touchdowns, from 15 yards out, to put CHS up 26-6, but the Chiefs (0-4) scored on a 31-yard pass from Landon Jeffers to Hunter Larmer with 1:05 remaining and the score at intermission was 26-12.
Cherokee would not score in the second half, but the Dragons poured it on, with Goins exploding for a 46-yard touchdown early in the third, a period that also saw Lee catch a touchdown pass from Keith and Braylon Taylor score on an 11-yard pass from Keith.
Keith capped off his night by tossing a 20-yard touchdown to D’Mon Marable with 4:55 to play in the fourth quarter.
- Clinton outgained the Chiefs 496 to 125 in total offense, which included negative-31 yards rushing.
- CHS was balanced (249 rushing, 247 passing).
- Keith finished completing 14 of his 20 passes for 247 yards, the five TDs and no interceptions.
- Goins gained 150 yards rushing on just six carries, an average of 25 yards per rushing attempt.
- Eight different receivers caught passes from Keith.
Box score by Dan McWilliams
Clinton—Wesley Phillips 16 pass from Joshuah Keith (Jacob Prewitt kick), 10:00, 1st
Clinton—Jeremiah Lee 62 punt return (kick failed), 7:28, 1st
Clinton—Lucas Kendall 41 pass from Keith (Prewitt kick), 4:13, 1st
Cherokee—Joe Henley 1 run (kick failed), 11:18, 2nd
Clinton—Jawan Goins 15 run (kick failed), 3:35, 2nd
Cherokee—Hunter Larmer 31 pass from Landon Jeffers (kick blocked), 1:05, 2nd
Clinton—Goins 46 run (Prewitt kick), 9:49, 3rd
Clinton—Lee 12 pass from Keith (Prewitt kick), 6:59, 3rd
Clinton—Braylon Taylor 11 pass from Keith (Prewitt kick), 3:06, 3rd
Clinton—D’mon Marable 20 pass from Keith (Prewitt kick), 4:55, 4th
First downs: Clinton 19, Cherokee 10
Rushes-yards: Clinton 16-249, Cherokee 19-minus 31
Passing yards: Clinton 247, Cherokee 156
Comp.-Att.-Int: Clinton 14-21-0, Cherokee 19-30-1
Total plays-yards: Clinton 37-496, Cherokee 49-125
Punts-avg: Clinton 1-33.0, Cherokee 6-23.8
Return yardage: Clinton 130, Cherokee 52
Sacked-yards lost: Clinton 1-1, Cherokee 3-20
Penalties-yards: Clinton 12-157, Cherokee 6-55
Fumbles-lost: Clinton 2-1, Cherokee 5-1
Time of possession: Clinton 16:08, Cherokee 31:52
Time of game: 2 hours, 38 minutes
Rushes – yards…Clinton: Goins 6-150 (2 TDs), Keith 6-77, Chauncey Felts 2-29, Erreese King 1-7, Team 1-minus 14; Cherokee: Nick Matroni 2-15, Henley 1-1 (TD), Tyler Wolfe 1-minus 1, Noah Parvin 8-minus 10, Team 3-minus 16, Jeffers 4-minus 20
Passing (Completions-Attempts-Interceptions – yards)…Clinton: Keith 14-20-0 247 (5 TDs), Team 0-1-0 0; Cherokee: Jeffers 19-30-1 156 (TD)
Receptions – yards…Clinton: Kendall 4-100 (TD), B. Taylor 3-44 (TD), Marable 2-45 (TD), Teegan Bolinger 1-21, Phillips 1-16 (TD), Lee 1-12 (TD), King 1-5, Jaquan Benton 1-4; Cherokee: Elisha Tipton 9-49, Henley 5-39, Larmer 2-45 (TD), Aidan Wood 2-19, Matroni 1-4
Punting – total yards – average…Clinton: Blane Collins 1-33-33.0; Cherokee: George Horlander 6-143-23.8
Kickoff returns – yards…Clinton: Goins 2-29, Lee 1-11; Cherokee: Tipton 4-32, Henley 1-19, Larmer 1-7, Team 1-minus 6
Punt returns – yards…Clinton: Lee 3-85 (TD); Cherokee: none
Interceptions – yards returned…Clinton: Derek Bean 1-5; Cherokee: none
Fumble recoveries…Clinton: Marable; Cherokee: Tipton
Fumble returns – yards…Clinton: Marable 1-2; Cherokee: none
Sacks – yards…Clinton: Brandon Hollifield 2-16, Elijah Batiste 1-4; Cherokee: Wood 1-1
Blocked extra point…Clinton: Gage Wergin; Cherokee: none