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PREP FOOTBALL 2010 Reaching the Summit Highlanders legend Benny Hammonds goes for 300th career win — Page 2

Can the Smoky Bears repeat last year’s perfect 10-0 regular season? — Page 6 Talented Pigeon Forge Tigers look to get over the .500 hump — Page 4 Young Seymour squad hopes to improve in tough District 2-AAA — Page 8 Will TKA succeed without winningest class in school history? — Page 10

Thursday, August 19, 2010


The Mountain Press ◆ Thursday, August 19, 2010

GATLINBURG-PITTMAN Red Zone Coach: Benny Hammonds Coach’s record: 298-117, 39th season Last Year: 10-2 Strengths: Experienced QB and receivers could provide thrills and pave way for bruising running game Weaknesses: Injuries have limited the team’s practice as a unit, new line needs experience Players to watch: Senior QB Tye Marshall; senior WR Ron Durbin; senior RB Dillon Reagan; senior newcomer Walter Barber; senior lineman Bill Huskey; receivers Ryan Taylor and Jeremy Hibbard Key departures: WR Colin Meier, OL Elijah Casey, OL Chris “Smoky” Ledford, LB Caleb Brien, C Spencer Williams Quotable: “If you’re playing football, you’ve got to be a tough individual. It’s not for sitting back and licking your wounds. We’re not wanting kids to play hurt, but there’s some difference between injuries and just a little pain.” — G-P coach Benny Hammonds

Schedule Date Opponent 8/20 @ Oneida 8/27 @ Cosby 9/3 open 9/10 Sullivan East 9/17 Gibbs 9/24 Unicoi County 10/1 @ Union Co. 10/8 Fulton 10/15 @ Austin-East 10/22 Carter 10/28 @ PFHS* * denotes TV game

Photo courtesy of Bill Ridge/Creative Images

Injuries raise questions for Highlanders By COBEY HITCHCOCK Sports Writer GATLINBURG — Coming off a 10-2 season a year ago, the GatlinburgPittman Highlanders football team enters the 2010 season loaded with talent but questioning their own toughness and heart. “We’ve got some experience coming back at the skill positions, and that should be really good to us. But I’ve never seen anything like these injuries we’ve been having,” said 39th-year G-P coach Benny Hammonds. “I don’t know whether they’re goldbricking on me and need to toughen up, or not. “But we’ve had too many people missing practice to be a very good football team. That’s just a fact. We need to get more people on the practice field and get more practice time in before we even tap into our potential. Right now, that’s just not being done with all these people out. Right now it’s just been aggra-

Jason Davis/The Mountain Press

G-P receiver Ron Durbin was cited by coach Benny Hammonds as a player who’s played through some pain this preseason. Durbin should be a big weapon for quarterback Tye Marshall. vating and frustrating and disappointing, when you know that it takes a lot of repetitions in practice in order to get yourself better. We’re not doing that right now.”

“When you’ve had this many injuries and this many people out, it’s hard to even get a good look at how good you can be.” Despite missing as many as eight potential starters

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for a variety of reasons, the Highlanders have experienced a lot of success this preseason in scrimmages. But it’s mostly been quickstriking success, versus the grind-it-out type.

“In our scrimmages, we’ve just been a big-play offense,” said Hammonds. “I’ve been really disappointed in our tackling and our toughness. “A lot of that goes along with not being able to get the reps in practice that we need. That’s killing us, and if we don’t get it remedied, I don’t know what kind of a season we’re going to have. There’s a long way to go for this team, and we’re nowhere near where we need to be at this point in the season. We’re way behind schedule on our toughness, conditioning, being healthy and getting reps in. We really don’t know what our potential is.” Hammonds realizes that some injuries are legitimate, including senior Turner Merritt, who suffered a season-ending ACL tear in a scrimmage against Cumberland Gap. “That’s a big loss for us, because Turner is a valu-

2010 SOUTHEASTERN CONFERENCE FOOTBALL SCHEDULE TEAM Sept 4 Sept 11 Sept 18 Sept 25 Oct 2 Alabama San@Jose Arkansas Auburn LSU Mississippi State Ole Miss Florida Georgia Kentucky South Carolina Tennessee Vanderbilt

Tuscaloosa Tenn. Tech @ Fayetteville Arkansas St. @ Auburn North Carolina @ Atlanta Memphis @ Starkville Jacksonville State @ Oxford Miami Univ @ Gainesville La-Lafayette @ Athens Louisville @ Louisville So. Miss @ Columbia (Sept 2) Tenn-Martin @ Knoxville Northwestern @ Nashville

Penn State @ Tuscaloosa La-Monroe @ Little Rock Miss State @ Starkville Vanderbilt @ Nashville Auburn @ Starkville Tulane @ New Orleans USF @ Gainesville So. Carolina @ Columbia W. Kentucky @ Lexington Georgia @ Columbia Oregon @ Knoxville LSU @ Nashville

Duke @ Durham Georgia @ Athens Clemson @ Auburn Miss State @ Baton Rouge LSU @ Baton Rouge Vanderbilt @ Oxford Tennessee @ Knoxville Arkansas @ Athens Akron @ Lexington Furman @ Columbia Florida @ Knoxville Ole Miss @ Oxford

Arkansas @ Fayetteville Alabama @ Fayetteville So. Carolina @ Auburn W. Virginia @ Baton Rouge Georgia @ Starkville Fresno State @ Oxford Kentucky @ Gainesville Miss State @ Starkville Florida @ Gainesville Auburn @ Auburn UAB @ Knoxville OPEN DATE

Oct 9

Florida So. Carolina @ @ Tuscaloosa Columbia Texas A&M OPEN @ DATE Arlington La-Monroe Kentucky @ @ Lexington Auburn Tennessee Florida @ @ Baton Rouge Gainesville Alcorn State Houston @ @ Starkville Houston Kentucky OPEN @ DATE Oxford Alabama LSU @ @ Tuscaloosa Gainesville Colorado Tennessee @ @ Boulder Athens Ole Miss Auburn @ @ Oxford Lexington Alabama OPEN @ DATE Columbia Georgia LSU @ @ Baton Rouge Athens Connecticut E. Michigan @ Hartford @ Nashville

Oct 16 Oct 23 Oct 30 Ole Miss @ Tuscaloosa Auburn @ Auburn Arkansas @ Auburn McNeese St @ Baton Rouge Florida @ Gainesville Alabama @ Tuscaloosa Miss State @ Gainesville Vanderbilt @ Athens So. Carolina @ Lexington Kentucky @ Lexington

Tennessee @ Knoxville Ole Miss @ Fayetteville LSU @ Auburn Auburn @ Auburn UAB @ Starkville Arkansas @ Fayetteville

Nov 6 Nov 13 Nov 20 Nov 27

LSU @ Baton Rouge Vanderbilt So. Carolina @ @ Fayetteville Columbia Ole Miss Chattanooga @ @ Auburn Oxford Alabama OPEN @ DATE Baton Rouge Kentucky OPEN @ DATE Starkville Auburn La-Lafayette @ @ Oxford Oxford Georgia Vanderbilt OPEN @ @ DATE Jacksonville Nashville Kentucky Florida Idaho State @ @ @ Lexington Jacksonville Athens Miss State Charleston Georgia Southern @ @ Lexington Starkville @ Lexington Vanderbilt Tennessee Arkansas @ @ @ Nashville Columbia Columbia Alabama So. Carolina Memphis OPEN @ @ @ DATE Knoxville Columbia Memphis Georgia So. Carolina Arkansas Florida @ Athens @ Nashville @ Fayetteville @ Nashville OPEN DATE

Miss State @ Tuscaloosa UTEP @ Fayetteville Georgia @ Auburn La-Monroe @ Baton Rouge Alabama @ Tuscaloosa Tennessee @ Knoxville So. Carolina @ Gainesville Auburn @ Auburn Vanderbuilt @ Lexington Florida @ Gainesville Ole Miss @ Knoxville Kentucky @ Lexington

Ga. State Auburn @ @ Tucaloosa Tuscaloosa (Nov 26) LSU Miss State @ @ Starkville Little Rock Alabama OPEN @ Tucaloosa DATE (Nov. 26) Ole Miss Arkansas @ @ Baton Rouge Little Rock Arkansas Ole Miss @ @ Starkville Oxford LSU Miss State @ @ Baton Rouge Oxford Appalachian Florida St State @ @ Gainesville Tallahassee Georgia Tech OPEN @ DATE Athens Tennessee OPEN @ DATE Knoxville Troy Clemson @ @ Columbia Knoxville VANDERBILT Kentucky @ @ Nashville Knoxville Tennessee Wake Forest @ Nashville @ Nashville


Thursday, August 19, 2010 ◆ The Mountain Press

2010 G-P Seniors

Hammonds has an eye on 300th win at helm of the Highlanders By COBEY HITCHCOCK Sports Writer

Bill Bales

Bill Huskey

Dillon Reagan

Dusty Bilbry

James Spearman

Jeremy Hibbard

Mahavir Patel

Michael Patton

Ron Durbin

Ryan Taylor

Turner Merritt

Walter Barber

Tye Marshall


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able leader and a hard worker, and he just signifies what high school football is all about with his work ethic and big heart. The football team is going to miss him, but we hope he can be around every day, because he can be a big influence on the rest of the kids.” Hammonds also knows that some of his banged up players are playing through the pain, including senior WR Ron Durbin, who’s had an excellent preseason despite playing with a sore wrist. “Durbin is to be commended,” said Hammonds. “He’s got injuries, but he just fights through them. Some of our players are not doing that. “If you’re playing football, you’ve got to be a tough individual. It’s not for sitting back and licking your wounds. That’s the way the sport was designed. We’re not wanting kids to play hurt, but there’s some difference between injuries and just a little pain. Sometimes you’ve got to fight through

a little pain in order to be a good football player.” G-P has an abundance of talent at the skill positions this season, specifically a trio of pass catchers — Durbin, Ryan Taylor and Jeremy Hibbard — and senior quarterback Tye Marshall. “Those (four) boys spend a lot of time working extra together, spending a lot of time working on their routes and throwing, throwing, throwing,” said Hammonds. “That has showed off in our scrimmages, because the big-play potential of our offense is there at any time with those boys. “Tye had a very good scrimmage against Cumberland Gap, and the more he plays the better he gets. And Ron Durbin has the speed to beat about anybody we’ll face, and Tye has the arm to throw it deep, and that makes it good that we’ve got that threat around.” Experience and depth along the G-P line was the biggest question heading into this season, and although there has been some progress made as a unit, there’s still a lot of room for improvement

GATLINBURG — Gatlinburg-Pittman Highlanders’ Benny Hammonds enters the 2010 season just two games shy of joining an elite Tennessee high school football coaching club. With 298 wins under his belt entering his 43rd season of coaching gridiron prep players, Hammonds needs just two more wins to become just the fifth high school football coach in Tennessee to achieve 300 career victories, according to TSSAA records. The District 3-AA Highlanders play two road games to open this season at District 4-A powerhouse Oneida on Aug. 20, and at District 2-A Cosby on Aug. 27. And although it would be nice to achieve his 300th win in Gatlinburg on the field that bears his name, Hammonds would much rather that the milestone be reached just across the Cocke County line at Cosby High School. “I want to beat Oneida, and I want to beat Cosby. I’ll put it that way,” said Hammonds. “I’ve heard a lot of people talk about (300 wins), but I just want us to play the best we possibly can up at Oneida, and the best we possibly can at Cosby. “I’m not concerned with (the 300th win) at all, other than the fact that I don’t like getting beat. But as far as records are concerned, those take care of themselves.” Winning his 300th game in Cocke County would be nearly as fitting as winning it at Hammonds Field. That’s where Hammonds’ football career began, after all, as a gridiron star for the Cocke County Roosters. And after a fiveyear playing career for the Carson-Newman Eagles, Hammonds’ first coaching gig was as an assistant at Cocke County. In his third year at Cocke County, Hammonds was promoted to head coach for the 1969 season but finished a disappointing 0-9-1 that year. After a falling out with his hometown Roosters, Hammonds went to Morristown East for a year as an assistant and then took a year off to pursue a master’s degree en route to an expected college coaching career. In 1972, Hammonds found a job he hoped would be a big stepping for the big guys up front, especially with the loss of Merritt for the season. “We still need a lot of work in that area,” said Hammonds. “We’re just going to have to keep working and developing as many players as we can that can help us on Friday nights in that area.” The Highlanders will find out how tough they are early, when the Blue and Gold travel to District 4-A power Oneida for Week 0. “Oneida has had several of their players from as far back as the 1980s coming to their practices every day, encouraging them and bringing up the fact that they’ve never beat us and it’s going to be their year this year,” said Hammonds. “They’ve been playing this game up big for several weeks now, and they’re putting a lot of emphasis on it. We’re going to have to play mistake free and be at the top of our game, and right now it’s hard to get there because how many of our players have been missing practices.”

Benny Hammonds through the years Photos submitted

Benny Hammonds has been a prep football coach for 43 seasons, including the past 39 for the Gatlinburg-Pittman Highlanders. Top left, Hammonds as a rookie coach for his high school alma mater Cocke County Roosters. Top center, Hammonds in is rookie season at G-P. The remaining pictures are from various points in his coaching career, leading from the helm of the Highlanders to 298 wins entering 2010. stone to the college ranks as the coach of Oak Ridge High School. But the deal fell through at the last minute, and Hammonds took the only job he could find on such short notice. The job was at G-P, and 39 seasons later, the rest is history ... in the making. “At the last minute, the Oak Ridge job fell through,” explained Hammonds. “And because I thought I was in at Oak Ridge and it was so late, the only thing I could find was this job at G-P a couple of days before the season started. “I told them I’d stay until Christmas, and it’s been 39 years now. It’s a good situation, a great community, a great school and a great environment. It’s been fun, enjoyable and a great job.” But things weren’t always smooth for the coach at G-P, and after limited success in his first few seasons, Hammonds nearly decided to make another career change. “I was pretty frustrated, because we didn’t have very good football teams at the start,” said

Hammonds. “We were 2-8, 4-6 and 4-6. But after that, in the fourth year, we’re were 8-2 and we really started improving. “But I came a hair away from leaving two or three times those first three years. I just thought we could do better than we were doing, and I just couldn’t get it turned around. But it’s all worked out. “I’ve been around here long enough ... to win a lot of football games, but we’ve lost a lot of games too, and some of those we should have won. And we’ve had a year or two along the line when we completely blew it and didn’t play up to near our potential. But overall, it’s been a good 39 years at G-P.” Hammonds has earned the respect of his peers throughout the years, including the respect of the other head football coaches in Sevier County. “Coach Hammonds has turned out a lot of winners, and I can’t remember the last time coach Hammonds had a losing season,” said 19th-year SCHS head football coach

Steve Brewer, who won a state championship with the Smoky Bears in 1999 and went 10-0 last regular season. “It seems like they’re winning eight or nine ball games a year up there, and he’s done a great job. “To win 300 games is quite an accomplishment, and he deserves the recognition that he’s going to get. He’s been at this a long time, he’s been great for the game and I’m sure his 300th win will come relatively quick.” Fourth-year Pigeon Forge coach Lee Hammonds, who is Benny’s son, played high school football at G-P for his father and eventually became a 13-year assistant coach for the Highlanders before taking the helm of the Tigers program. Although the split caused a rift between the father and son for awhile, the fences have been long since mended between the two, and Lee credits his father for being a positive influence on his life. “He’s not in it for him,” Lee said about his father. See HAMMONDS, Page 12

Gatlinburg-Pittman High School Roster No. 2 3 4 5 6 7 10 11 12 14 15 16 17 18 20 21 22 24 28 30 32 33 36 39 40 42 50 51 53 55 56 57 58 60 62 64 65 68 70 73 74 77 78 80 86 89

Name Walter Barber Tye Marshall Jeremy Hibbard Casey Church Caleb Downey Tanner Cox Ron Durbin Justin Horner Ryan Myers Ryan Taylor Blade Durbin Riley Trotter Ty Smith Dakota Eltzroth Jamel Foster Brandon Merritt Zeke Williams Clay England Dillon Reagan James Spearman Lane Carr Tanner Flynn Spencer Brien D.J. Ball Brandon Ogle Terry Phillips Hunter Meier Dev Patel Ty Herrell Josh Russell Mahavir Patel Gavin Turner Casey Green Hansford Howell Julian Lipton Robert Rosco Michael Patton Joe Morris Bill Huskey Bill Bales Luke Joslin Jake Carver Turner Merritt Drew Hall Jeremy Odorn Dusty Bilbrey

Class 12 12 12 9 9 9 12 10 11 12 10 9 11 11 10 11 9 10 12 12 10 10 9 11 11 11 11 11 11 10 12 9 10 9 10 10 12 10 12 12 10 9 12 10 9 12

Height 6-2 6-1 6-0 5-9 5-4 5-10 6-2 5-9 6-0 6-0 6-3 5-10 5-9 5-5 5-7 6-1 5-9 5-10 5-10 5-10 6-0 5-7 5-10 5-9 5-8 5-9 5-10 5-7 6-4 5-5 5-9 5-8 6-0 5-8 6-0 6-0 6-0 5-10 6-3 6-3 5-11 6-1 6-4 5-9 5-6 5-11

Weight 205 200 185 190 105 145 195 180 215 185 190 155 160 140 135 180 145 155 160 200 185 155 180 215 145 205 205 175 250 185 200 170 175 225 260 245 240 185 290 315 200 205 230 165 130 170



The Mountain Press ◆ Thursday, August 19, 2010

------PIGEON--FORGE-----Red Zone Coach: Lee Hammonds Coach’s record: 10-20, 4th season Last Year: 4-6 Strengths: Newfound passing game with Cory Fox throwing to Kaleb Black and Cameron Faulkner should compliment brutal Chase Travis running attack Weaknesses: The team is still young, and the defense has to prove itself capable of stopping the big play

Tigers have eye on the postseason By COBEY HITCHCOCK Sports Writer PIGEON FORGE — The Pigeon Forge Tigers football team enters the 2010 season cautiously optimistic. The Orange-and-Black squad has gone 3-7, 3-7 and 4-6 the past three seasons under fourth-year head coach Lee Hammonds, who took the Pigeon Forge job after serving 13 seasons with the Gatlinburg-Pittman Highlanders as an assistant/offensive coordinator. Hammonds took over the program after the Tigers hit a new low with an 0-10 campaign in 2006. The previous low was in the program’s third year of existence, when the Tigers went 2-9 in 2003. Despite the fact that most of the current Pigeon Forge starters were a big part of the past two 3-7 seasons, the Tigers are still considered to be a young squad. Of the 48 players on the varsity roster, 41 of them are freshmen, sophomores and juniors. Just seven seniors return to this year’s team. But sophomores QB Cory Fox and WR Kaleb Black, and juniors RB Chase Travis, FB Michael Lombrana and WR Miguel Coello have all had some standout performances at skill positions during the preseason, which Pigeon Forge completed with a 3-0 scrimmage record against Claiborne County, Oakdale and Sweetwater, and a 13-10 loss to the 2009 District 2-AAA champion Sevier County High School Smoky Bears (10-1 last season). “I feel like our skill guys have developed because they’re older, even though they’re still considered young so to speak,” said Hammonds. “But we don’t look at it by what grade they’re in, and we never have. “The public puts the label on us of being young, and the reality was that we were young. But we don’t ever talk about how young we are, we just have our athletes ... and if we feel they’re good enough and physically ready, they’re going to play.” “Has it paid off playing our young guys (the past couple seasons)?” Hammonds asked rhetorically. “We don’t know yet, because we haven’t played our first regular-season game yet. “Basically, it’s the same group of kids who played last year. But we feel like with the offseason weight program and them developing more strength, speed and quickness ... we feel we’re a little more athletic than we have been, even though for the most part it’s the same kids.” But just because the Tigers have shown some glimpses of promise this preseason, there’s no room for big heads on the Pigeon Forge roster. “Just having a little more talent on the football field

Jason Davis/The Mountain Press

Chase Travis runs through driving rain during the Tigers’ 7-6 win over Meigs County last season at Jim Whaley Field in Pigeon Forge on Oct. 9, 2009. doesn’t necessarily mean you are going to win any football games,” warned Hammonds. “We’ve got to coach the heck out of them, and they’ve got to respond. We’ve got to believe we can win football games and be able to overcome adversity and do the things it takes to win football games. “My expectations are always going to be high for this football program, and I hope our kids are starting to understand that. All the kids have been in this system (for the past three-plus years), so that’s got to help. “We’ve been consistent with what we’ve done, and we’ve stuck to what our plans and goals were from 2007. As long as you’ve got a system in place ..., you hope you don’t have anywhere to go but to get better. That’s what we’ve focused on, and hopefully it pays off. “But we feel there’s some things falling in place, and we’ve got some team unity. When you’re trying to build a program right, it takes a while. As a coach, you want to win (right now), but we also came into this with some long term goals, and I feel like we’re doing the right things because we’re seeing our kids developing and getting better.” Although the Tigers remain relatively healthy heading into this season, the Orange-and-Black team may be missing one of its biggest offensive weapons for the Week 1 season opener at home against Greenback. Travis, who was named as one of three Class 3A preseason All-State Team running backs by Murphy Fair, suffered a high ankle sprain in the scrimmage against Sweetwater and is currently considered day-to-day. Much the way they’re looking at the 2010 season, the Tigers are remaining cautiously optimistic about their workhorse running back. “Hopefully we can have him back for Greenback,” said Hammonds. But the Tigers may opt to

give Travis at least another week to get healthier, because Pigeon Forge doesn’t play a district game until Week 2 at Gibbs Eagles. Even with Travis missing work at the moment, the Tigers are in a better situation than a lot of prep teams. It appears the injury bug has been biting across Tennessee. “I’ve talked to a lot of coaches ..., and I think this has been an issue all over the state,” said Hammonds. “I heard the other day that Halls High School had 19 kids who weren’t practicing for different types of injuries. “I think the heat has a little to do with it ..., but I don’t know if this heat is going to break or not (any time soon) and you’ve got to get your kids accustomed to it. You’ve just got to be smart about it, keep the kids hydrated ... and follow the (TSSAA heat index) rules.” ——— TIGERS’ NOTEBOOK: The Pigeon Forge football program has not made the playoffs since 2005, when the team lost a first-round playoff match-up 55-7 against Austin-East and finished with a 5-6 mark. The Orange and Black are ready for a return to the postseason. “Our goal, which we haven’t done since I’ve been here, is to make the playoffs,” said Hammonds. “We’d like to get back into the playoffs, and it’s always been our goal to extend our season. Our ultimate goal is to extend our season and be playing in November.” What will it take for the Tigers to achieve that goal under the new TSSAA playoff system that was brand new last year and then modified again after the organization muffed the first 2009 playoff match-up announcement and then had to withdraw, reconsider and re-unveil with changes that had some already skeptic coaches up in arms? “There’s still some stuff up in the air about who can get

in, and wildcards and this and that,” said Hammonds. “I haven’t paid much attention to that, because I don’t like to worry about that. “We’ve just got to go out every Friday night and win football games, and our goal every year is just to get better every day at practice and take one game at a time. We just really try to focus in on that week and play as well as we can possibly play to give ourselves a chance to win on Friday night.” As the Tigers remain focused on one game at a time, the reality of the big playoff picture is fairly clear. In order to have a decent shot at making the postseason under the new TSSAA


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rules, Pigeon Forge will likely have to record its firstever winning season. The Tigers went 5-5 during the regular season in both 2004 and ‘05. “Your (overall) record is going to speak a lot about making the playoffs,” said Hammonds. “We’d like to (earn a winning record), there’s no doubt. Our goal is to win as many as we can. But for us to do that, we’ve got to take the small steps that teaches kids how to win. We’re still learning.” And because the District 3-AA Tigers are one of just three 3A teams in the district when TSSAA playoff classifications kick in — along with county rival GatlinburgPittman and the A-E Roadrunners — they know there is only one guaranteed playoff spot up for grabs. “(To make the playoffs), we’ve got to beat some district opponents,” said Hammonds. “With us, Austin-East and G-P in the 3A classification (at playoff time), we’d like to be able to get a win against at least one of them.” Putting up a win against A-E or G-P would be an historic accomplishment for the Tigers. Pigeon Forge is 0-3 against A-E and 1-8 against G-P all-time. The lone 20-6 win over G-P came in 2005, when the Highlanders finished with a less-than-mediocre 4-7 record that included a 91-7 first-round playoff See TIGERS, Page 5

Players to watch: Junior QB and PFHS all-time leading rusher Chase Travis; junior OL Seth Munasque; senior OL Oscar Aleman; junior OL Shane Ball; sophomore QB Cory Fox; sophomore WR Kaleb Black; junior WR/K Miguel Coello Key departures: WR Rodney Porter; DL Mike Martin; DL Mikey Taylor; Shane Shahan Quotable: “Our goal, which we haven’t done since I’ve been here, is to make the playoffs. We’d like to get back into the playoffs, and it’s always been our goal to extend our season. Our ultimate goal is to extend our season and be playing in November.” — PF coach Lee Hammonds

Schedule Date


8/20 8/27 9/3 9/10 9/17 9/24 10/1 10/8 10/15 10/22 10/28

open Greenback @ Gibbs @ Cosby @ Fulton Grainger @ Carter @ Meigs Co. Union County Austin-East G-P*

* denotes TV game


Thursday, August 19, 2010 â—† The Mountain Press

2010 Pigeon Forge Seniors

Oscar Aleman

Trey Cupp

Cameron Faulkner

Jared Beck

Coty Young

Not present on picture day: Wesley Rodman

Pigeon Forge High School Roster Jason Davis/The Mountain Press

Pigeon Forge first-year quarterback Cory Fox will have the protection of some talented offensive lineman like center Seth Munasque and left guard Oscar Aleman (pictured above).

PF big men clear the way for offensive attack By COBEY HITCHCOCK Sports Writer While the Pigeon Forge Tigers skill-position players have been noticed for their exciting play this preseason, some of the big men up front haven’t gone unnoticed by the Orangeand-Black coaching staff. Anchoring the 2010 Pigeon Forge offensive line will be junior center Seth Munasque, senior left guard Oscar Aleman and junior right guard Shane Ball. Munasque is a 2010 Murphy Fair preseason All-State Team lineman. “He’s a hard worker, and he’s very deserving (of the All-State honor) because of his work ethic,� said fourth-year Tigers head football coach Lee Hammonds. “He gets up at 6 a.m. every day — except game days — during the season to work out, and he does a lot of work on his own. He loves football and he does a lot of things extra to make himself a better player. “He’s not vocal and he


3From Page 4

coach to record 300 career victories. It’s facts such as those that keep the Tigers from looking too far down the road. “We’ve just got to take it week to week, take care of ourselves and control ourselves,� said Hammonds. “The wins and losses take care of themselves.� ­­­——— The Tigers again have their bye week on Week Zero this year, which should give their star running back Chase Travis the opportunity to heal a high ankle sprain for at least seven more days. But Hammonds doesn’t know if having an early bye is favorable or not. “I don’t know (if it’s an advantage to have your off-week early),� said Hammonds. “Sometimes (a bye) can help you in the middle of the season, but it really depends on how your season is going. “But we like to start on Week 1, even though the kids get a little tired of beating around on each other, and they’re chomping at the bits to get under the (Friday night) lights.� ——— The Tigers eyeing at least a six-win season,

doesn’t say a whole lot, but he’s a leader by his play and he does the right things. He’s a good kid and a good example to all the kids. I’ve never heard anything negative from him. “I guess his biggest problem is that he doesn’t say enough and doesn’t communicate with me enough about certain things. I think he’s a little shy, but he’s just a good kid and he’s got a good family.� Aleman is also another hard-working blue-collar player who made voluntarily traded a glory position for a hard hat-andlunch pale spot at left guard. “Oscar is a converted tight end,� said Hammonds. “He’s a good athlete, but he just kind of outgrew the position. He’s got some pretty good feet on him, and he’s pretty strong. “He could still make plays for us at tight end ..., but we needed some help up front last year and he willingly moved to the interior line. He gladly made the move, didn’t

they understand that their Week 1 seasonopening match-up against the visiting Greenback Cherokees will be a big key to achieving their first-ever winning record. “A big goal is to win our opening football game, because you can get some momentum from that,� said Hammonds. Although Greenback is a 1A program at playoff time, the 1987 State Champion Cherokees have a strong football tradition that includes a 24-13 win over Pigeon Forge last season. “We’re by no means overlooking them,� said Hammonds. “They beat our butts last year, and we know we’ve got to play our butts off this year to win. “Greenback has got some good looking athletes for a small school, and they’ve always got a good football program. They’ve got a good tradition down there, and they play some good football for a single A school. But we don’t look at it as playing against an A, AA or AAA program. We just look at it as a football game, and we’ve got to line up and play our best to win.�

gripe about it and I think he’s really enjoying right now.� And although Ball’s 2009 season was hampered a bit due to injuries, the player appears to be on track for a breakout 2010 campaign. “Shane has been doing a good job and doing a lot of extra work,� said Hammonds. “He’s one of those good weight lifters, one of those good weight room guys, and he’s been working on his quickness and his speed. “He’s just really dedicated to the program and he’s done a good job just getting himself ready and prepared to play this season. “He’s just a junior, and he had an injury last preseason that cost him a few weeks to get into the flow. But fortunately he’s been healthy this year, and he’s just done a lot on his own to get ready for us. We expect some big things out of him this year.�

No. Name 2 Chase Travis 3 Kaleb Black 4 Cameron Faulkner 5 Cody Davis 6 Shane Sharp 7 Trey Cupp 8 Josh Peak 9 Austin Stepson 10 Miguel Coello 11 Nathan Marine 12 Cory Fox 14 Trevor Dryman 15 Devin Boda 17 Austin Boyd 18 Daniel Abbott 19 Joseph Valverde 20 Devin Boyd 21 Daniel Troutman 22 Josh Lombrana 23 Austin McCarter 24 Cody Fisher 25 Patrick Barbiere 27 Nathaniel Parton 28 Matt Stewart 30 Michael Lombrana 31 McKenly Matthews 32 Eric Pildner 33 Trent Dryman 34 George Gazettas 35 Steve Huskey 36 Glenn Hodge 38 Irvine Martinez 44 Trevor Reed 50 Shane Muse 52 Oscar Aleman 53 Zakk Romans 54 Coty Young 56 Jared Beck 57 Brandon Jusino 59 George Sunderland 60 Honre Lebar 63 Shane Ball 66 Brett Stelzer 67 Ryan Reese 70 Seth Munasque 71 Dakota Norris 74 Gage McCarter 79 Hunter Finchum 80 David Whitice 81 Eli McDowell 82 Zach Posey 87 Wesley Rodman

Class Jr. So. Sr. Jr. Jr. Sr. Jr. 9 Jr. 9 So. So. 9 Jr. So. Jr. Fr. So. So. So. Jr. So. Jr. Jr. Jr. Fr. Jr. So. Jr. So. Jr. Fr. So. So. Sr. So. Sr. Sr. So. Sr. Jr. Jr. Jr. So. Jr. Fr. Fr. Fr. So. Jr. Jr. Sr.

Height 6-0 5-10 5-7 6-1 6-2 6-1 5-6 5-6 5-6 5-7 6-1 6-1 5-11 5-11 5- 10 5-9 5-10 5-10 5-9 5-10 5-11 5-10 5-9 5-8 5-8 5-6 6-0 6-1 5-10 5-9 5-5 5-8 5-7 5-11 6-0 5-9 6-0 5-6 6-0 5-11 5-8 6-0 5-10 6-2 6-0 5-3 6-2 6-4 5-10 5-10 5-8 6-2

Weight 190 150 150 200 180 215 150 140 145 140 180 140 130 155 145 165 165 225 155 145 165 190 165 185 185 110 195 135 155 210 135 170 165 235 285 215 175 175 245 230 210 245 200 270 310 175 235 280 160 155 140 175


Jason Davis/The Mountain Press

Miguel Coello, a newcomer on the PFHS team, could provide a weapon with his foot for the Tigers.


3EVIERVILLE 0ARKWAY Two Convenient Locations To Serve You.    Sevierville Gatlinburg 'ATLINBURG 726 Parkway 1007 E. Parkway %0ARKWAY (865) 428-3777 (865) 436-7463 M-F:   7:30-6:00 SAT:7:30-4:00 MON-SAT: 8:00-5:30


The Mountain Press ◆ Thursday, August 19, 2010


Red Zone Coach: Steve Brewer Coach’s record: 183-134 19th season Last Year: 10-1 Strengths: Team uses wide-open, precision passing game and a slew of fresh, rotating receivers to wear down defenses. Defensive backfield has potential to be good. Weaknesses: Experience. Team is replacing five starters on the offensive line and conference player of the year at quarterback, in addition to senior group widely regarded as the school’s best in several years. Players to watch: Senior QB Danny Chastain; senior WR Bryant Gilson; senior RB/LB Dakota Cogdill; senior WR/ DB Josh Johnson; junior WR/DB Brett Pippin; junior C Dustin McGill; senior RB/DB Brad Mason Key departures: QB Zach Flynn; OL Ross Heatherly; WR Bryce Whaley; RB/ LB Kel McCarter; ATH Jeremiah Foster; DL Robert Whitelaw; DB Matt Spangler; WR/ DB Austin Nave Quotable: “It’s hard. Football’s not an easy game. It requires you getting out here when it’s hot in the summer. It requires a certain amount of dedication, and that’s one of the things that I’ve really appreciated from these kids. They’ve been dedicated.” — SCHS head coach Steve Brewer

Schedule Date Opponent 8/20 @William Blount 8/27 Halls 9/3 @Jefferson Co. 9/10 Dobyns-Bennett 9/17 Cocke County 9/23 Morristown West* 10/1 @Seymour 10/8 open 10/15 Cherokee 10/22 @South Doyle 10/29 @Morristown East * denotes TV game

New starters, same confidence for talented Smoky Bears squad By JASON DAVIS Sports Editor SEVIERVILLE — Sevier County coach Steve Brewer always exudes a quiet, unassuming confidence and workman-like ethic that often passes down to his players. This Smoky Bears team may have lost the 19 seniors that helped lead it to an undefeated regular season in 2009, but you wouldn’t know it based on the players excitement for the upcoming season. And nowhere was that excitement more evident than in the Smoky Bears’ preseason. “We had 33 kids that did not miss a summer workout,” Brewer, in his 19th year at the helm of the Bears, said. “That’s 6:30 a.m., four days a week. They made 28 out of 28 possible workouts. And we had another eight that made 22 of 28 workouts. So that’s 41 kids.” Forty-one teenagers, nearly 75 percent of the team, attending voluntary workouts at the crack of dawn, when they could be sleeping away their summer vacation. That’s dedication. “It’s hard. Football’s not an easy game,” Brewer said. “It requires you getting out here when it’s hot in the summer. It requires a certain amount of dedication, and that’s one of the things that I’ve really appreciated from these kids. They’ve been dedicated.” But for all their dedication, the Bears are missing some things from last year’s squad. Mainly, it’s the gobs of experience last year’s senior class of 19 players brought to the field. That, and the nearly extrasensory connection those players shared to focus on completing the task at hand. “I think the biggest challenge this team has is playing together,” Brewer said of this year’s crop of varsity players. “Those guys last year played together for so long. We’ve got a different mixture this year. They’re going to have to play together, and their mindset has to be there. “Last year’s group did not like to lose, and I think that’s what carried us through some of the close games that we had — they just did not want to lose,” Brewer continued. “I think we’ve got enough kids in this group that have that kind of mindset, but we’ve got to have everybody doing that.” If this year’s team wants to get on the ‘refuse to lose’

Jason Davis/The Mountain Press

Sevier County running back Dakota Cogdill breaks off a long gain against Cocke County this season. Cogdill may be in the best shape of his high school career this season, having dropped his weight in the off-season. bus, they’ll have to get some good play up front from five new full-time starters. Line coach Bill Galloway thinks his charges will do just fine. Though they’re small, Galloway said there are positives to his new line. “This is probably the first time ever that I’ve ordered the line t-shirts and not had to order a triple-extra large,” the line coach said.. And while they’re smaller than last year’s graduates, they’ve also got something a those Bears didn’t have — speed. “We’ll be a lot quicker up front and more athletic,” Galloway said. But there is also a downside. “They’re not as big and powerful,” the coach said. Glancing over the Bears’ roster, the biggest linemen tip the scales at 265 — a far cry from some of the huge linemen of the past. But Galloway said that size isn’t always what a team needs on their line. “We’ll be alright,” Galloway said. “With Danny (Chastain) at quarterback we’re not going to line up and run a wishbone and knock people off the ball. “We’re going to spread it out and chuck it all over the field and spread you out and then run the ball

Jason Davis/The Mountain Press

Sevier County senior receiver Bryant Gilson (24) battles with Pigeon Forge senior defensive back Cameron Faulkner (4) as SCHS QB Danny Chastain fires a pass. Gilson made a perfect turn and hauled in the pass, setting up a Bears’ TD. on you a little bit. It fits the personnel we have. We’re not going to line it up and run the Nebraska.” The team’s starters should be senior Brad Kreceman (6-2, 200) at right tackle, sophomore Logan Jepko (6-0, 265) at right guard, sophomore Dustin McGill (6-3, 260) at center, sophomore Ray Smith (6-1, 235) at left guard and junior Jake Robbins (5-8, 205) at left tackle. “They’re young -- three

sophomores, a junior and a senior,” Galloway said. Only McGill, Krecemen and Robbins have varsity experience, with only McGill having started a ballgame. Past the line the Bears real strengths begin to show. At quarterback senior Danny Chastain doesn’t have tons of varsity experience taking snaps, but he’s done well when he’s in and brings a real element of excitement to the position.

“You want the ball in Danny’s hands as much as you can, because he’s going to make some things happen,” Brewer said. Chastain showed last year his ability to run, returning kicks and punts, and he also showed his arm, tossing two TDs in relief of starting QB Zach Flynn. Back-up QB Cullen Lavoi is also a capable signalcaller. See BEARS, Page 7


Thursday, August 19, 2010 ◆ The Mountain Press

2010 SCHS Seniors


3From Page 6

At running back, Brewer thinks the Bears have three or four players that will get carries with the varsity, led by second-year starter Dakota Cogdill and junior Bubba Floyd. At receiver the Bears are loaded. “I feel like we can line up and get eight receivers in the mix,” Brewer said. Leading the way will be college prospect Bryant Gilson, a 6-2 possession receiver with some speed, and Brett Pippin, a speedburner who’s shown the ability to make big catches in preseason scrimmages. With all those receivers coming in and out of games, there should always be a fresh pass-catcher lined up with a route-weary defensive back. “I think if we cut down on our penalties and mistakes, we can have a very good offense,” Brewer said. Defensively, the Bears can be good, although there are positions of concern. “I feel like our defensive front can be the strong part of our defense,” Brewer said. “We should be good in the secondary, and our linebackers probably the most inexperienced group on our defense. We’ve got several bodies there, and we need three of them to step up in a big way.” Along the defensive line Thomas Hamilton, Jake Reppert, John Berry, Brandon Tinker, Ronnie Homerding. Logan Jepko and Jimmy Spentzos will take turns clogging up running lanes and chasing down quarterbacks. “Those are just some of the guys that have stepped up and given us, I think, a pretty good defensive front,” Brewer said. At linebacker Dakota Cogdill will lead a group of relatively inexperienced players, while the defensive backfield will likely be effective, thanks to the large group of tall rangy athletes the Bears have playing receiver. As far as special teams, the Bears will rely on sophomore kicker Jared Baxter for scoring tries.

Brad Kreceman

Brad Mason

Brandon Tinker

Bryant Gilson

Dakota Cogdill

Danny Chastain

Dustin Gibson

George Park

Jake Reppert

Joseph McMahan

Josh Johnson

Josh Norris

Kendall Beal

Kevin Meehan

Ronnie Homerding

Thomas Hamilton

Tyler Wischer

Jason Davis/The Mountain Press

Josh Johnson may be juggling a Danny Chastain pass here, but he pulled in the catch versus CAK in scrimmage action and gained a long first down to set up a touchdown. “Baxter’s long (field goal) last year was 32 yards,” Brewer said. “And he’s probably increased that by at least five yards. If the ball’s between the 20 and 25, we feel like he can get it through for us. His leg’s gotten strong, and hopefully, by the time he’s a senior (he’ll be kicking even further). He was a weapon last year for us. He did a terrific job.” Jeffrey Henry will handle our kick-off duties, while Dakota Cogdill will handle the punting chores. Coach Brewer said perhaps the biggest factor to determine the effectiveness of both the offensive and defensive production is consistency.

“At times we’ve looked good,” Brewer said, referring to preseason scrimmages. “At times we’ve looked bad. That’s a thing that we’ve been harping on. We’ve got to be consistent. That’s what we’re lacking right now. Sometimes on both sides of the ball we do things really well, and it may not take until the next series to look like we don’t have a clue.” “I just want to see us be more consistent, and cut down on our penalties. Those things are disciplineoriented. You’ve got to be disciplined. Consistency is something we’ve got to get better at in a hurry,”

Sevier County High School Roster No. Name 1 Josh Johnson 2 Dakota Cogdill 3 Casey Carr 4 Jeffrey Henry 5 Danny Chastain 7 Bubba Floyd 9 Jared Baxter 10 Zac Lewis 11 Cullen Lavoi 12 Mitchel Tarity 13 Michah Loveday 14 Seth Brooks 15 Martez Tarity 16 Davis Rader 18 Kevin Meehan 19 Casey Ritter 21 Brayden Culp 22 Brett Pippin 23 Tyler Wischer 24 Bryant Gilson 25 Logan McCarter 26 Brad Mason 27 Luke Trentham 28 Max Driscoll 30 Tyler Hansen 31 Dillon Cate 33 Dexter Robbins 34 Bobby Lister 35 Çolby Bailey 38 Josh Norris 41 Austin Aldridge 43 Kevin Frisbie 45 Ryan Jussaume 46 Chase Yates 47 Joseph McMahan 50 Dustin McGill 51 Jake Reppert 52 Jimmy Spentzos 53 Dustin Gibson 54 Wil Keener 57 Jordan Paul 58 Logan Latham 60 Brad Kreceman 62 Thomas Hamilton 63 Ethan Hubbard 64 Jake Robbins 65 George Park 70 Ray Smith 72 Ralph Watson 75 Shawn Kintzele 78 Logan Jepko 79 Max Araiza 80 Brandon Cline 81 Ronnie Homerding 84 Brandon Tinker 85 Kendall Beal 87 Devin Miracle 88 John Berry 89 Josh Suttles

Class Sr. Sr. So. So. Sr. Jr. So. Sr. Jr. So. Jr. So. So. So. Sr. Sr. So. Jr. Sr. Sr. So. Sr. So. Jr. Jr. So. So. Jr. So. Sr. Jr. So. Jr. So. Sr. Jr. Sr. Jr. Sr. So. Jr. So. Sr. Sr. So. Jr. Sr. So. So. So So. So. Jr. Sr. Sr. Sr. Jr. Jr. So.

Height 6-1 5-11 6-0 5-9 5-10 5-10 5-8 6-1 5-11 6-0 5-11 5-8 5-11 5-11 5-10 5-11 5-8 5-11 6-2 6-2 6-0 5-11 5-7 6-2 5-9 5-8 5-10 5-10 5-10 6-2 5-7 5-7 5-11 6-4 6-2 6-3 5-9 5-7 5-9 5-8 5-10 5-10 6-2 5-10 5-10 5-8 6-2 6-1 5-10 5-6 6-0 6-0 6-3 6-3 5-8 5-11 5-7 6-1 5-11

Weight 160 205 155 160 165 170 130 195 175 145 155 170 150 175 150 155 140 175 160 175 155 195 150 175 155 150 165 145 190 170 175 125 130 190 220 260 245 165 205 195 265 190 200 180 250 205 200 235 205 225 265 255 185 255 175 215 145 210 170


Zac Lewis

Good Luck Sevier County Teams in 2010!


The Mountain Press ◆ Thursday, August 19, 2010


Red Zone Coach: Jim Moore Coach’s record: 4-7 2nd season Last Year: 4-7 Strengths: When playing well, running game can be difficult to contain with both quarterback and running backs capable of breaking long gains Weaknesses: Lots of sophomores and juniors with little varsity time on the field. Defense, usually the rock of Seymour teams, is a question mark heading into the season. Players to watch: Senior WR/DB Cory Clark; senior RB/LB Logan Rutherford; senior QB Dustin Fain; senior RB Lee Knight; junior RB/ LB Corey Todd; senior RB/LB Kevin Kennedy; senior WR/DB David Johnson Key departures: RB Blake Overton; DT Nick Smith; RB/LB Keegan Newport; DT Wes White; RB Chase Ketron; K/P Stephen Martin; OL Joe McCarter; LB Hunter Crain; LB Cody Watson Quotable: “If the attitude stays the same — the kids have got good attitude, they work hard and they’re coachable — we’ll get better as the season progresses. The more experience they get, and the more live-action they get, the better they’ll get.” — Jim Moore, Seymour head coach

Schedule Date Opponent 8/20 @Daniel Boone 8/27 CAK 9/3 @Cocke Co. 9/10 @Heritage 9/17 Jefferson Co. 9/24 open 10/1 Sevier County 10/8 @Morristown East 10/15 South-Doyle 10/22 @Cherokee 10/29 Morristown West

Youth, inexperience and lack of depth could make 2010 challenging for Eagles By JASON DAVIS Sports Editor SEYMOUR — This year’s version of the Seymour Eagles could look a little different than years past. For the past few seasons the Eagles have been the picture of a tough, stingy defense. In 2008 the Eagles allowed just 8.7 points per contest, while pitching three shutouts. Last year, despite a move up in classification, the Eagles only allowed 15.3 points per game. This year, however, the Eagles have only three returning starters on defense, and an entirely new d-line. “We’ve got three kids that could end up starting for us on the defensive line that have never played in a high school football game,” second-year head coach Jim Moore said. “We’re a very young, inexperienced team. This is my 31st year (coaching), and I’ve never had a team this inexperienced.” And it’s not just on defense. On the offensive line Seymour could have a steep learning curve as well. “We’ve got two (offensive linemen) that it’s their first time (playing much),” Moore said. “And one that never started last year, but played some. “Three of the five are inexperienced. And one of the two that are experienced, is playing a a different position.” Chris Humphrey, a senior who previously played center, has been moved to guard. “Chris is a strong kid and moves well, so we put him over at the guard spot,” Moore said. With the restructured offensive line, Moore expressed some concerns about his team’s protection of senior quarterback Dustin Fain. “If we can protect the quarterback, Dustin can throw the ball,” Moore said. If Fain gets protection, there are still things he needs to perfect in his final season in the Blue and Gold, “Dustin’s got to decide to take what’s there instead of thinking he’s the gunslinger of the old wild west and just flinging it 70 yards,” Moore said. “When he takes what’s there, Dustin’s very capable of doing a real good job.” Fain can also be a dangerous runner out of the

Jason Davis/The Mountain Press

Dustin Fain, above, fires a pass for Seymour during the team’s jamboree matchup with Gatlinburg-Pittman. Though a nail-biter to the end, Seymour came away with a 6-0 victory. At right, then-junior punt returner Cory Clark bolts down the sideline for a long gain during the Eagles 2009 shellacking of the Cocke County Fighting Cocks. Clark, a senior this season, is expected to be a team leader for Seymour.

backfield for the Eagles. “He’s physical,” Moore said. “He’s between 6-1 and 6-2, 200 pounds, and he’s strong. He lowers his shoulder, and he’s a bull.” Another place Seymour should be well-equipped for the season is at running back. “We’ve got seven running backs that we can play that we don’t lose a whole lot with,” the coach said. “Our big thing is just getting the linemen to do what they’re supposed to do, every single time. “Our fastest kid, our best running back, is Lee Knight,” Moore continued. “He played very little (last season), he transferred in and was playing behind Keegan (Newport), a three-year starter. But Lee can scoot, and he’s got very good cuts. But he’s got to stay healthy, and that’s been a problem.

He’s small, probably 5-6 1/2, 168 pounds, but he’s stout — he’s strong as a bull — but you take a wearing at that spot, especially at this level.” Spelling Knight’s position in the Eagles’ backfield formations will be Colton Flynn and Trevor Wallace. “Colton’s just a good hard-nosed kid and he played quite a bit last year at running back,” Moore said. “Trevor Wallace is sophomore, and a good one, too.” At the other back position, reps will be divided between Kevin Kennedy, Corey Todd and Taylor Overton — the younger brother of Seymour’s top backfield weapon last season, Blake Overton. “(Those three) are pretty equal. We’ve got some good little running backs,” Moore said.

At wide receiver, senior Cory Clark, who also shines on defense as a returning free safety, will lead the way. “Cory’s good, Cory’s very good,” Moore said. “Receiver, free safety, kick returner, wherever you put Cory, he’s very good. He’s such an intelligent player. He’s very rarely out of position, and he’s just a great kid.” Clark will be looked to as a team leader by Moore and his staff, as well as fellow Eagles Kevin Kennedy, Chris Humphrey, Dylan Bennett, Colton Flynn and Lee Knight. Kennedy and Logan Rutherford are the only returning starters on defense besides Clark. They both play outside linebacker. Flynn, who played substantial time outside last season has moved into the

middle to shore up a need there. Corey Todd and Kevin Taylor will start at opposite cornerback spots. Reflecting on a scrimmage with a powerful Powell squad from a few weeks ago, Moore keeps things in perspective, including his team’s youthful inexperience. “At one point last Friday I looked out on the field and saw 10 sophomores,” Moore said. “You can’t play 10 sophomores and actually expect to win (consistently) at this level. But that’s where we are. But we’ve got a good sophomore class. We just don’t have any depth. “We’re so young. We can look pretty good one second, and then just look awful the next,” he continued. See EAGLES, Page 9


Thursday, August 19, 2010 ◆ The Mountain Press


3From Page 8

“Our (tackling) angles (against Powell) were awful, and that’s what we’ve worked on all week,” Moore said. “It’s looked better out here. But this defense, it’s not sit-read-react. It’s know where you’re going, get there and stay on a level plane. As long as everybody’s staying on a level plane, there’s not many areas (an offense can go). But if you have two going on the right plane and one, two or three going on a different level, then you’ve got huge gaps.” But the coach said the

team’s attitude could help them improve drastically by season’s end. “If the attitude stays the same — the kids have got good attitude, they work hard and they’re coachable — we’ll get better as the season progresses,” Moore said. “The more experience they get, and the more live-action they get, the better they’ll get.” Still, he said things must go perfectly for the team to see immediate success. “We have to stay away from injuries. We can’t afford anything bad,” Moore said. “Everything’s got to go right. We can’t have a bad play. We’ve got to be con-

sistently good. We don’t have the ability to overcome a lot of bad things right now. We’ve got some good athletes, we just wish we had more. We wish we had good ones backing up the ones we’ve got.” But, always the optimist, Moore sees the good side of fielding such a youthful squad. “The more reps they get and the more live-action they see the better off they’re going to be,” Moore said. “And if they keep doing things right, staying coachable and keeping a positive attitude, they could be pretty good (in the future).”

2010 Seymour Seniors

Ashton Satterfield

Anthony Wilson

Brad Owens

Chris Humphrey

Brett Murr

Cory Clark

Dustin Fain

David Johnson

Dylan Bennett

Jason Davis/The Mountain Press

Seymour’s Jamie Cota (50) blows by the competition in the linemen 40-yard dash contest at last week’s Sevier County Football Jamboree.

Seymour High School Roster No. 1 2 3 4 5 7 8 9 10 11 12 14 17 18 20 21 22 23 25 26 27 29 30 31 32 34 36 37 39 43 46 47 48 50 51 52 53 54 56 57 59 63 64 67 68 71 72 73 76 78 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87

Name Cory Clark Brandon White David Johnson Kevin Kennedy Dane Brunson Zach Egan Justin Long Hayden Brooks Logan Rutherford Taylor Overton Bobbo Chesser D.J. Griffin Dustin Fain Corbin Ogle Lee Knight Troy Houk Corey Todd Kevin Taylor Brandon Hawker Kyle Settle Corey Heard Brian Call Chris Grimo Joey Ward Quincy Pugh Larry Elrod David Buchan Tyler Harmon Brad Owens Ashton Satterfield Austin Proffitt Bryson Dockery Colton Flynn Jamie Cota Micheal Norton Derek Sexton Brandon Hines Derek Terry Kameron Shepherd Dylan Bennett Mitch Michaels Eric White Chris Welch Christopher Humphrey Shane Chipley Tim Maher Seth Martin Dylan Gilliland Chris Neubert Brett Murr Mitchell Miller Atticus Morrison Tanner Cox Matthew Salter Brock Bowers Anthony Willison Johnathon Hurst Austin Bellew

Class Sr. So. Sr. Sr. Jr. Sr. Sr. So. Sr. Jr. Jr. So. Sr. So. Sr. So. Jr. So. Jr. So. So. So. So. So. Jr. So. So. Sr. Sr. Sr. So. So. Sr. Sr. So. So. So. So. Jr. Sr. Jr. Jr. So. Sr. Sr. So. So. So. So. Sr. Jr. So. So. Sr. So. Sr. Jr. So.

Kevin Kennedy

Height 6-0 6-0 6-0 5-9 5-8 5-9 5-10 6-1 5-11 5-7 6-3 6-4 6-2 5-8 5-7 6-0 5-9 5-9 5-4 5-9 5-10 5-7 6-0 5-11 5-11 5-6 5-11 5-9 5-8 6-0 5-3 6-1 5-10 5-8 5-6 5-11 5-9 5-8 5-10 6-1 5-5 6-3 5-8 6-0 5-10 5-10 5-9 5-7 6-5 6-0 6-2 5-9 5-7 6-0 5-6 5-11 5-7 5-6

Weight 179 155 161 174 155 170 175 160 185 158 185 180 210 150 173 170 175 176 168 171 142 150 155 140 220 147 175 137 141 172 133 213 178 170 175 155 185 185 156 200 165 240 153 217 170 250 200 220 240 297 165 153 146 188 170 163 163 132


Jamie Cota

Lee Knight

Matthew Salter

Logan Rutherford

Tyler Harmon

Zach Egan

Have a Great and Safe 2010-2011 School Year Your Sevier County Officials Larry Waters County Mayor

Jonas Smelcer Road Superintendent

Joe Keener County Court Clerk

Jettie Clabo Trustee

Jeff Rader Dwight Stokes General Session Judges

Ron Seals Sheriff

Connie E. Holt General Sessions Clerk

Johnny King Tax Assessor

Sherry H. Robertson-Huskey Register of Deeds

Carolyn McMahan Clerk & Master

Jack A. Parton Director of Schools

Rita Ellison Circuit Court Clerk


The Mountain Press ◆ Thursday, August 19, 2010


Red Zone Coach: Larry Watson Coach’s record: 43-61 14th season Last Year: 6-3 Strengths: Team is finally used to winning, after threestraight successful seasons. Tricky running game powered by big back David Lamon can wear down opponents. Defense has shown good speed. Weaknesses: Winningest class in school’s history graduated in May. Inexperience abounds with many players new to the game of football. Freshman and sophomores have to play early and often. Players to watch: Senior FB/DL David Lamon; sophomore QB Harrison Atchley; Senior OL/NT Josh Preslar; junior RB Bill Na; freshman QB Adam Deatherage; junior RB Josh Cate Key departures: TE/ DE David Kirkpatrick; RB/LB Jon Rose; QB Dane Hoffmeister; OL/DL Caleb Krug; RB William Lakatosh; RB/LB Jordan Smith Quotable: “The terminology, we try to keep it simple. We try not to do too many weird snap counts. And we don’t do too many audibles, that could be disastrous. Especially when we’re putting people in motion on almost every play. It’s got to be pretty standard, like ‘snap count’s on two.’” ­­— The King’s Academy head coach Larry Watson, on dealing with the multiple language barriers with international student athletes

Schedule Date Opponent 8/20 8/27 9/3 9/10 9/24 10/1 10/7 10/15 10/22

Lancaster @ Mt. Juliet Christian Franklin Classical @ Jellico St. Andrews @ Sunbright Unaka Oakdale (HC) Riverside Christian (SN)

New pride of Lions will try to continue winning legacy at TKA By JASON DAVIS Sports Editor SEYMOUR — Gone is the winningest senior class in the history of The King’s Academy. Names like William Lakatosh, David Kirkpatrick, Dane Hoffmeister, Jordan Smith and Jon Rose are only a memory on the Lions’ roster. The nine seniors that helped TKA to threestraight six-win seasons have moved on, but coach Larry Watson still believes his squad can be successful in 2010. “We’ve got nine seniors again,” Watson, the team’s 14th-year head coach said. “(And) out of those there were five or six that were here all summer just looking for work to do (to improve) — so I see some of the characteristics that I enjoyed for the last three or four years out of those other guys.” While the coach said the team will miss Lakatosh’s breakaway speed on offense, team speed has improved in other areas. “We’ve changed our defense to take advantage of, hopefully, some speed that will allow us to be more aggressive on defense,” he said. Dotting the lineup are several multi-purpose athletes that will contribute big, both on offense and defense. David Lamon, a senior fullback and defensive lineman, is where it all starts. “He’s going to be a stalwart and team leader on both sides of the ball,” the coach said. “But the thing about him is we’re going to have to get him a break every once in a while, because he does carry the big load, both on offense as well as defense.” Bashing defenses through the middle from his fullback spot, other backs, such as Bill Na and the brothers McCammon (Ethan and Dillon), will likely get to challenge a softened opposition. And all that running will do nothing but benefit new Lions’ quarterbacks Harrison Atchley, a sophomore, and Adam Deatherage, a freshman. “We’re expecting pretty good things out of (Atchley),” Watson said. “He started the last game of last season, and he’s worked all summer. He’s been here, and he’s been going to quarterback camps — he’s really invested the time. “He can play both ways, but we’re trying to make him into a true quarterback.” Still, with just 22 players on the Lions’ roster, he

Photo submitted

TKA players rally around each other as the team plays at a jamboree in Neyland Stadium last Friday. may have to see time at free safety. Deatherage, the little brother to former TKA twosport star Andy Deatherage, is also an option at QB. “Andy made a big difference later on in his career, but I think that (Adam) could be challenging (for playing time at QB as a freshman). Hopefully we can get them both some reps in there. He’s very knowledgeable and very teachable. I’d expect some good things out of him.” Bill Na, mentioned earlier as a running back, is possibly the Lions’ best international player, of which they currently list several on the roster. “(Na’s) an 11th grader from Korea. He came in and had never played, but he’s probably going to start and make a big impact on both sides of the ball and at kicker,” Watson said. Other players Watson expects to make an impression on the team include the multi-talented junior Josh Cate, and senior linemen Josh Preslar, Dale Slomski and Forrest Palmer. “Preslar has been a stalwart and will continue to be,” Watson said. “He’s probably the real team leader. He’s solid — not a lot of rah-rah — but leads by example.” “I think Josh Cate will impact,” he continued. “He could play linebacker, but we might need him at free safety, just because of his experience. “(And) a couple of guys that have stepped up are seniors Forrest Palmer and Dale Slomski. They’ve both come along very fast. (Forrest) has matured like two years in one. I think that we’ll hear his name making a play or two (that he wouldn’t have made before). Will he get 50

tackles a game? No, but there’s some improvement there.” And while TKA’s roster of 22 doesn’t look too impressive right now, Watson thinks it can improve. “Some of the guys still aren’t here — they’re in route from different countries,” Watson said. “(And) I’m still walking the halls. So I’m hoping we’re going

to get some (more), and some transfer guys that have maybe played at another school or (boarding) students that have never dawned a helmet.” While it works to bring in warm bodies and increase numbers, sometimes international players complicate matters for TKA coaches and players. “The organizational part

is probably the hardest part of it,” Watson said. “They have to run a set play. If they’re used to playing soccer — there are plays — but it’s a little looser. It’s not ‘go through the 2-hole’ or something like that. So there is a difference there. I do like the reckless abandon, but you’ve still got to See LIONS, Page 11


Thursday, August 19, 2010 ◆ The Mountain Press

Lions’ leaders Lamon and Preslar keep team on point By COBEY HITCHCOCK Sports Writer SEYMOUR — The King’s Academy football roster may have the size of David, but the players have the hearts of Lions. “We are small and we don’t have as many numbers as a lot of teams,” said TKA senior 6-foot-2, 225-pound running back/ linebacker David Lamon, referring to the Lions 22-man varsity roster. “But numbers and size doesn’t mean anything. “One of my goals this season is to remind our players that just because we’re smaller in numbers doesn’t mean we’re not capable of beating anyone. “I want our players to understand that we can beat anyone, as long as we play as a team. The size of our hearts is more important than the size of our roster.” Although the Lions have averaged 30 players on their varsity roster the past three six-win seasons — the most successful three-year run in TKA school history — the Purple and Gold are ready to circle their wagons at Huskey Field to defend their winning ways this fall, although they’ll be circling them with about eight less wagons than usual. “I’m really confident in what we’ve got,” said 14th-year TKA coach Larry Watson. “I think we’re pretty solid. I think we’re capable of winning all of our ball games. “We’ve had a little vision of what we can

“I want our players to understand that we can beat anyone, as long as we play as a team. The size of our hearts is more important than the size of our roster.” TKA senior David Lamon

accomplish by covering each others’ backs. It’s a team thing.” Two of the reasons Watson believes his current team can put together its fourth-straight winning season are because he has some senior leadership in players such as Lamon and 6-foot-3, 285pound offensive guard/ nose tackle Josh Preslar. “Josh is always ready to play, and he’s a good student of the game,” said Watson.

“He’s not afraid to take risks within reason, and he’s a hard worker who leads by example. “And David brings the bravado to our team with his toughness and physical play.” Both players put team goals ahead of their personal agenda, but when pressed, they’ll admit to some individual aspirations. “My goal is just to take things one game at a time, and focus on one game at

a time and not overlook any team,” said Preslar. “I want to win as many as we can and get the best record we can. “As for myself, I didn’t have much opportunity to play a lot of defense last year, but it’s something I’m looking forward to this season very much. I would very much enjoy getting a lot of sacks and tackles for loss, but I enjoy helping the team anyway that I can the most.” As for Lamon, who figures to be the workhorse for the Lions offensive attack, his objective is simple. “To get as many yards as I can get,” he said.

2010 TKA Seniors

Anthony North

Byeong-Jin Kim

Dale Slomski

David Lamon

The King’s Academy Roster No. 3 6 7 9 11 12 20 21 24 31 33 46 48 51 55 56 71 75 77 81 84 89

Name Arther Oliveira Drew Slomski Elijah Connatser Sam Herbert Harrison Atchley Adam Deatherage Ethan McCammon Dillon McCammon Josh Cate Byeong-Jin Kim Bill Na David Lamon David Bagwell Edison Aubrey Forest Palmer Dale Slomski Blake Huff Josh Preslar Anthony North Jon Eimmerman Min Jae (Tom) Kim Sae Min Kim

Class So. Fr. Fr. Fr. So. Fr. Fr. Sr. Jr. Sr. Jr. Sr. So. So. Sr. Sr. Jr. Sr. Sr. So. Jr. Sr.

Height 5-9 6-0 5-11 6-0 5-11 6-2 5-7 5-8 5-9 5-5 5-8 6-2 5-7 5-4 5-6 6-2 6-1 6-2 6-2 5-7 5-8 6-0

Weight 145 155 145 180 140 150 145 140 175 155 150 220 135 140 165 220 250 285 225 170 170 200


Dillon McCammon

Forrest Palmer

Josh Preslar


3From Page 10

hit the hole.” Watson also said some things others take for granted are tough when everyone’s not speaking the same language. “The terminology, we try to keep it simple,” Watson said with a laugh. “We try not to do too many weird snap counts. And we don’t do too many audibles, that could be disastrous,” he chuckled. “Especially when we’re putting people in motion on almost every play. It’s got to be pretty standard, like ‘snap count’s on two.’” All in all, Watson expects the team’s numbers to be pretty good by their opening kickoff Friday against Lancaster Christian at TKA. And he hopes the team can continue winning — it’s something they’ve gotten used to over the past few seasons. “They say it’s the best (it’s been) in several years,” Watson said. “And I use it as a rallying call. In my history — and I’ve been here a while — we’ve been through some very lean years, so (win-

Jason Davis/The Mountain Press

Sophomore QB Harrison Atchley started the last game of last season, and will be the Lions’ field general from the beginning this year. ning) is positive. I don’t attribute it to coaching as much as we’ve just got some guys showing up here that have a little football experience, and

they are in a program with the middle school. It’s a progression, and I’ll go along with it.”

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TKA running back Bill Na tries to stretch out the yardage at a jamboree at Neyland Stadium last Friday in Knoxville.


The Mountain Press ◆ Thursday, August 19, 2010


“I don’t have any plans (for retirement). I don’t know when that day will come, but when you get my age, you kindly go day to day.”

3From Page 3

“I’ve tried to learn a lot about that from him. You’ve got to be in it for the kids, not have an I-me program. I’m just here (at Pigeon Forge) as a little bitty pea in a big old pot, and we’re trying to make it work. I’ve taken a lot from dad, there’s no doubt. “Obviously he’s been a big influence on the way I coach. He’s taught me a lot about hard work and discipline and just doing the things that it takes to win football games. “There’s been times that Gatlinburg-Pittman has not been the most talented team to line up on a football field, but by golly they believe they’re going to win and they expect to win, and they are going to line up and come right at you. I’m trying to instill those things into (the Pigeon Forge) program. He’s been a big influence, and I’ve taken a lot of things from him, and I’m trying to run a program a lot of the same way because it’s successful. “As a football coach, you better never think you know it all, because if you do you’re not going to be very successful. You’ve got to take bits and pieces from here and there, and there’s no doubt I took a lot from dad.” According to TSSAA records, Benny Hammonds currently ranks all-time as the fifth-most winningest football coach in the state of Tennessee with an overall record of 298-135-1, including a 298-126 mark at G-P. The all-time leader in career wins is Carlton Flatt of Brentwood Academy who earned a mark of 355-68-3 for the Eagles from 1971-98 and from 2002-06. Only one other active coach in the state of Tennessee has more wins than Hammonds’ 298. Ken Netherland of St. George’s Independent

Benny Hammonds

School currently has a 350127-3 record coaching the Gryphons gridiron platoon. According to Lee, his father should be a shoein for the TSSAA Hall of Fame. “He should get in (the HOF),” said Lee. “He’s done a lot for Gatlinburg, the school, the community and obviously the football program. He’s done a lot up there for them. “That kind of stuff (like HOF recognition) doesn’t mean much to him, but it would be a nice closure when he decides to retire ... but who knows when that’s going to be.” Although many have speculated as to when Benny Hammonds will take the Golden Handshake, retirement is not on the G-P coach’s mind. He credits his work ethic to his mother, Mamie “Flame” Hammonds, who passed away at the age of 90 on Saturday, Aug. 7, of this year. “It’s just the way I was raised, to do what you’re supposed to do and be where you’re supposed to be,” said Hammonds, who attended a special 8:30 a.m. football practice on Tuesday, Aug. 10, before rushing to his mother’s funeral in Newport at 11 a.m. that same morning. “She would have been very disappointed and upset if I wasn’t at football practice. That’s just the way she raised me.

“That’s who I am, just (like) my mom and my dad. That’s the way most people are, kindly just chips off the old block. She was raised back in the Depression when times were tough, and I was taught to respect everything and that everything is valuable, especially time. “So if you’re going to get a day’s pay, you’re expected to do a day’s work. That’s just the way it is, and that’s just the way I like to work at it too. I don’t have any plans (for retirement). I don’t know when that day will come, but when you get my age, you kindly go day to day.” Hammonds, who will turn 65 soon, said the game of football has changed through his four-plus decades of coaching. “It’s a different environment altogether,” said Hammonds. “Most kids growing up these days are not playing with real kids, they’re playing with kids on TV. But 40 years ago, kids were playing with kids. We don’t get much of that any more. “But kids are smarter and better athletes now. And I think coaching has changed, and we do a lot better job preparing them and teaching them to play the game. There’s no question about that. It’s a lot more technical these days, when in the old days it was more about toughness. “As a head coach, you

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want to be compassionate to your players and win them over to your side. The only way you can do that is to help them and let them know that you’re on their side. We’re all in it together. But at the same time, you’ve got to be tough and you’ve got to have a backbone. Without that, you’re not doing the game justice, because it’s a game that’s got to be played with tough guys and boys that make sacrifices and learn to play through pain. “There are a lot of life lessons that are taught through this game, and it’s a great game. I think it’s the greatest game there is, especially at the high school level. At this age, the boys really mature a lot. It’s enjoyable as a head coach to watch that and be part of it. “They’ve got to have faith in you and have confidence in you and believe in you, and you’ve got to do the same for them. It’s

all got to be in it together. “It just means that you’ve been around a long time when you’ve got the opportunity to win 300 games. But you have to remember at the same time, I’ve never played a play for Gatlinburg-Pittman High School. It’s just a continuation of hard work (by all the players and coaches) since August of 1972 to right now. There’s been a lot of sweat, a lot of pride, a lot of work, understanding and growing up here on the football field and the practice field over a long period of time. “Even though we’ve had some good teams as the years have gone on ..., the boys who went 4-6 early on really laid the foundation for the teams that went 10-0. Some of those 4-6 teams had a lot to do with us having good records later on down the road. The credit goes to all the kids through the years.”

a mutual respect to work your hind end off for each other. There’s a lot of trust involved, and that makes it a great game. “I think as I’ve gotten older, I’ve got better at that. When you’re younger, you’ve got a tendency to kindly show them instead of talking them into it.” Although it suits him well for the game of football, Hammonds’ nickname, Bulldog, is not related to the gridiron. “I don’t know where that came from,” laughed Hammonds. “Nobody ever really called me that to my face, but when my grandkids started calling me that, now a lot of people do. That name hasn’t always been with me, but it has been the past 25 years, I guess. It’s stuck with me since then, which is fine. “I may have the reputation of being a bulldog and being tough, but at the same time, I’ve got sense enough to know that we’ve

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Sevier County Prep Football 2010  

The Mountain Press Sevier County Prep Football 2010 preview section

Sevier County Prep Football 2010  

The Mountain Press Sevier County Prep Football 2010 preview section