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12 Admirals earn All-Region 1-6A honors

The 2017 Admirals had yet another successful campaign.  Although it did not achieve it’s ultimate goal of a second straight State Championship, the team still garnered many accomplishments in route to a 9-3 season.  The Admirals were ranked in the AP Top 5 in Class 6A for eight straight weeks while riding a 19-game winning streak dating back to last season, the longest in school history.  The Admirals finished the season as the Region 1-6A runner-ups with wins over Morristown West, Jeff County, Science Hill, and Bearden, earning a home playoff game against Cleveland.  The Admirals also had impressive non-region wins over Bradley Central and Oak Ridge, both Quarterfinalists in their respective classifications.  The 2017 senior class will graduate as the winningest class in program history with 33 wins to only 6 losses in addition to the 2015 Region Championship and 2016 5A State Championship.  Due to the cumulative efforts by many players, certain individuals were recognized on the All-Region 1-6A team.

Braden Collins – Athlete of the Year – Braden led all receivers in 1-6A with his 793 receiving yards and 57 receptions.  He caught 8 passes for 200 yards versus Kingsport D-B and later tied his own school record with 13 receptions against Hardin Valley.

The Farragut offensive line stands tall against Science Hill on 9/29. PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Jonathan Buchanan – OL Jonathan finished his Admiral career having started all 27 games the last two seasons.  Jonathan consistently graded out as one of the top performers each week on the Offensive Line.

Cade Burkey returns a fumble against Cleveland on 11/3 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Cade Burkey – LB  Cade led all tacklers in 1-6A with 136 tackles on the season.  He finishes his Admiral career 3rd all-time in career total tackles with 334.

Drew Butler tackles the McMinn running back on 8/25. PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz, CRFOTO.com

 

Drew Butler – LB  Drew finished second in 1-6A with 135 total tackles and 13 tackles for loss.  Drew ends his outstanding career as the all-time leading tackler with 433 total stops.

Isaiah Gibbs stretches out for the touchdown against Cleveland on 11/3 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Isaiah Gibbs – RB  Isaiah led the Admirals with 1,283 yards from scrimmage and was fourth in 1-6A in rushing.  Gibbs also accumulated 248 yards in returns as he returns in 2018 for his senior season.

Neyland Harmon recovers a fumble against West on 9/22. PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Neyland Harmon – OLB Neyland was fourth for the Admirals’ defense with 79 total stops.  Other highlights include a 4-yard rushing TD to help seal the victory over Bearden.  Neyland returns in 2018 for his senior season.

Caleb Kuhn sacks the quarterback against Bearden on 10/13 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Caleb Kuhn – DE  Caleb finished second in 1-6A with 9.0 sacks on the year.  He also led the team with 15.0 tackles for loss, and was third on the team with 90 total stops.  He will return in 2018 for his senior season.

Wyatt Lucas intercepts a ball against Bearden on 10/13 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Wyatt Lucas – DB  Wyatt led all defenders in 1-6A with 6 interceptions on the year.  He nabbed 2 interceptions to go along with 130 all-purpose yards in the win over Bearden.  Wyatt returns in 2018 for his senior season.

PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Andrew Maxey – OL Andrew completed his Admiral career having started all 39 games the last three seasons at Left Tackle.  He graded out with the highest performance grade for OL on multiple occasions.

Jacob Warren catches a pass against Mo-West 8/31. PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Jacob Warren – TE  Jacob finished the year second in 1-6A in receiving yards with 659 yards.  His eight TD receptions led all receivers in the region.  His best performance was four-TD night to help defeat Bradley Central in the season opener.

Gavin Wilkinson rolls out and looks to pass against Dobyns-Bennett on 10/6. PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Gavin Wilkinson – QB Gavin finished second in 1-6A with 2,130 passing yards and was first with 17 TD passes.  He had three 300-yard plus performances versus Mo-West, D-B, and Hardin Valley.  He returns in 2018 for his junior season.

PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Alex Williams – Scholar Athlete Alex finished 2017 with 66 total stops, 8 tackles for loss, and 3 INT’s.  His work in the classroom was impeccable as he narrowly bested several other of his classmates with the team’s highest GPA of 4.37 over his high school career.

The 2018 Admirals are already hard at work to carry on the success that has been laid before them and much will be expected.  The Admirals will return five players that garnered All-Region honors in addition to many others looking to build off their success in 2017.  The Admirals will carry a 14-game home winning streak into the 2018 home opener against Bradley Central on August 17th.  The rising senior class will look to extend the Admirals’ on-field success and compete for another championship next fall.

Admirals Fall to Maryville to End 2017 Season

MARYVILLE — Maryville football has been so dominant against East Tennessee playoff teams in the 21st century, it rarely has won by less than a double-digit margin — almost all have been blowouts with many outcomes decided by halftime.

Though far less dominant, Farragut’s program entered last Friday’s Class 6A playoff second-round showdown against the mighty Red Rebels with its own single-digit success: not losing by more than eight points the past three seasons — defeated just five times since 2014.

Perhaps an early hit set the tone for Maryville’s continuing blowout success against East Tennessee foes.

Jacob Warren catches a long pass against Maryville on 11/10 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

An apparent first-down reception early in the game by talented FHS senior tight-end Jacob Warren, a Tennessee commitment, was jarred loose on a vicious hit.

Maryville [11-1] didn’t punt in the first half, making things look easy on both sides of the ball — and special teams — with 38 first-half points.  The Red Rebels also turned back the Admirals’ one good first-half drive with an interception.  It ended as a 38-6 Maryville victory Nov. 10 at MHS’ Jim Renfro Field.  Farragut’s season concludes 9-3.

Andrew Williams catches a long pass against Maryville on 11/10 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

A 52-yard bomb from junior Jake Evans, Admirals back-up quarterback, to senior receiver Andrew Williams set up Farragut’s only points by placing FHS at the Rebels 1. Devin Yarborough, senior running back, scored on the next play with just 1:31 left in the game.

About Maryville, Williams said, “They executed their offense well and they executed their defense really well, and that’s just what it takes to win.”

Nnamdi McSwine, senior defensive end, said the Red Rebels “are a hard team to beat. They’re well-coached, they don’t give up much. They don’t jump off-sides or anything.”

Eddie Courtney, Admirals skipper, labeled the game “disappointing,” adding, “I know we’re a better football team than what we showed tonight.

“… We didn’t help ourselves out early.  At the end we tried to make some things happen and have some fun out there.”

However, “You’ve got to give Maryville credit, playing on all cylinders tonight and executing real well,” Courtney said.

McSwine and Williams were among the Admirals seniors who reflected on the their careers at FHS.

Jackson Powers, offensive tackle, said, “Overall we went 33-6 over the past three years, and I think that’s pretty good.

“Overall, I think me and my team have built friendships and a bond, and it’s beyond what you can get in any other sport.

“I’m never, ever going to lose what I made on and off the field with my brothers,” Powers added. “Coach Courtney and the other [coaches] have helped me grow as a person.  I’ve really matured through the team.

“I’m really thankful for everything that I’ve been given over the past four years.”

Jonathan Buchanan, offensive guard, said, “I couldn’t have asked for anything more.  The coaches here are incredible.  It’s been an honor to play with them.

“It’s been a great career,” he added.

McSwine said, “The past three years have been amazing.  All of these guys here are my brothers.  I wouldn’t ask for a better team to play for.  I want to say, ‘good luck’ to the guys for next year.”

Williams, also a defensive back, said, “It was a great time.  We got to win a lot of games and play with my brothers.  It was fun.”

“We’ve had a good run this year,” Courtney said. “… I know this senior group has had a lot of success the last three years [including the Class 5A state championship in 2016].

“I know they’re going to be successful young men,” he added. “In the next five to 10 years, people are going to see another chapter in their lives about how successful they’ll be.

“I love these guys. I appreciate their effort.”

Ads beat Cleveland 42-28, Advance to 2nd Round

Farragut High School’s football team trailed most of the night before earning the right to advance to the second round of the Class 6A playoffs. The Ads had their hands full with a tough Cleveland squad — while also facing a little self-inflicted adversity.

Jacob Warren catches a pass against Cleveland on 11/3 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Farragut had to overcome four turnovers and a fourth-quarter deficit to notch a 42-28 victory over the Blue Raiders Friday night, Nov. 3, at Bill Clabo Field.

The Admirals [9-2] finally took the lead when senior tight end Jacob Warren hauled in a 6-yard touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback Gavin Wilkinson with 2:06 remaining in the contest to make the score 34-28.

Gavin Wilkinson throws a pass against Cleveland on 11/3 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Freshman kicker Daniel Bethel added the fifth of his six extra points to give FHS a 35-28 lead.

“That’s a play that we always have in our back pocket,” said Warren, who had eight receptions for 97 yards and a pair of touchdowns, about Wilkinson’s roll right and throw left pass. “We just have to execute it.

“It’s just a matter of going out there and executing. See the ball, go get it. Focus.”

The Blue Raiders, No. 3 seed in Region 2-6A, finish the 2017 season with an 8-3 record.

Isaiah Gibbs stretches out for the touchdown against Cleveland on 11/3 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

“We knew that Cleveland was a good football team and we knew that we were going to have to score points,” Farragut head coach Eddie Courtney said. “[Coach Scott] Cummings has a done a great job with them offensively and they really believe in what they do on defense — and we knew that.”

The Admirals, who struggled all night, controlled the fourth quarter. After Warren gave Farragut the lead for good, it would add insurance when Isaiah Gibbs scored from seven yards out with just under a minute to play to make the score 42-28.

Cade Burkey returns a fumble against Cleveland on 11/3 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

The game’s final touchdown was set up when senior linebacker Cade Burkey recovered a Cleveland fumble and rumbled to the 7-yard line.

It was Burkey’s second recovery of the game.

Cade Burkey recovers a fumble against Cleveland on 11/3 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

He closed the first half by scooping up a Blue Raider turnover and appeared to score a go-ahead touchdown but was ruled down by contact as the play was whistled dead.

Burkey, however, wasn’t complaining after the game.

“The best thing about a good team is that they always find a way to make plays,” he said. “We have good linebackers and when one of us is having a bad day, the other two will step up and pick the other one up.

“I’m really happy. Hat’s off to Jacob Warren for making catches that I just didn’t think we’re possible,” he added.

The final play made things even more special for Farragut. Max Travis, a senior, picked off a pass from Cleveland’s Kellye Cawood in the end zone as time expired.

Travis was slated to be Farragut’s starting quarterback but he was injured twice, dashing those hopes. But he made some big plays on defense against Cleveland.

“It felt great to get that interception,” Travis said. “It was a long time coming and it felt great.

“You don’t get to play with your brothers for 11 weeks and it’s great to finally go out there and play.”

“I’m proud for Max and I’m proud for our team,” Courtney said. “He was supposed to be our starting quarterback and he broke his hand. Then, he had an upper arm injury. But he was consistent and he stayed around. So we wanted to give him a chance to play.”

The night got off to a bad start for the Ads. Cleveland’s big play offense scored first when Cawood connected with Romeo Wykle on a 94-yard scoring strike midway through the opening frame.

The Ads answered when Warren made a spectacular catch in the end zone, making it 7-7.

Cleveland regained the lead later in the quarter on a 75-yard touchdown scamper by Keegan Jones.

Caleb Kuhn records a sack against Cleveland on 11/3 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Injured in the third quarter, Jones rushed for 230 yards. He also would score on a 90-yard run before being hurt, giving the Blue Raiders a 21-14 lead early in the third stanza.

Farragut scored the only points in the second stanza on a touchdown run by Gibbs.

Josh Moses scored his third touchdown of the season to make 21-21 before Cleveland scored one final time.

Gibbs made it 28-28 with 8:08 left in the game.

“At the end of the day, we just didn’t have enough to get it done,” said Cummings, a graduate of West High who led his alma mater to a Class 5A state championship in 2014. “We just didn’t execute.

“… Hats off to Farragut. They’re a great team.”

The Admirals will travel to Maryville in the 2nd round of the playoffs.

A special thanks to Carlos Reveiz and Ashley Wathen of CRFOTO for the action shots from the game.  Be sure to checkout CRFOTO.com every week for a full photo gallery from Friday’s game.  See a photo you like?  They are also available for purchase directly from his website.  Click here for this week’s photos.

OFFICIAL GAME STATS

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Farragut Falls to Hardin Valley, 37-36

Despite throwing 4 interceptions in the first half and trailing by 22 at halftime, the Admirals roared back to to score with 1:20 left on the clock to take their first lead of the game, 36-29. The Hawks, though, would drive down the field and score from 38 yards out with 8.2 seconds left on the clock to put the score at 36-35. Hardin Valley decided to go for 2 and were successful and won the game 37-36.

The Admirals will host Cleveland in the first round of the playoffs on November 3rd.

A special thanks to Carlos Reveiz and Ashley Wathen of CRFOTO for the action shots from the game.  Be sure to checkout CRFOTO.com every week for a full photo gallery from Friday’s game.  See a photo you like?  They are also available for purchase directly from his website.  Click here for this week’s photos.

OFFICIAL GAME STATS

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Admirals Tame The Bulldogs, Beat Bearden 31-14

Friday night’s matchup marked the 58th all-time meeting with annual rival Bearden, dating back to 1949.  It also marked Coach Courtney’s 250th game on the sidelines as head coach for the Admirals.

Wyatt Lucas intercepts a ball against Bearden on 10/13 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

The first quarter got underway and following a quick drive and Farragut punt, Bulldogs saw their first possession end with a Wyatt Lucas interception.  The Admirals, however, couldn’t take advantage of the opportunity and punted away again into Bearden territory.  The Bulldogs found a rhythm on offense, but their drive ended with a missed 24-yard FG.

Cade Burkey recovers a fumble against Bearden on 10/13 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

On the ensuing possession, the Admirals again went three-and-out and punted.  This time the Bulldog returner couldn’t handle the kick and a Cade Burkey recovery setup the Farragut offense at their own 45.  After a 6-yard completion to Jacob Warren on 1st down, RB Isaiah Gibbs darted 49 yards around right end to the end zone to put the Admirals on the board first, 7-0 with 9:14 left in the first.

After a Bearden three-and-out, and a 56-yard Wyatt Lucas punt return, the Admirals started from the Bearden 11-yard line.  The Admirals could only muster one yard in three plays and Farragut settled for a 27-yard Daniel Bethel field goal that made it 10-0, Farragut, with 5:49 left in the 1st.  The kick was the freshman’s first field goal conversion in his career on only his second attempt for the season.

Alec Keathley and Neyland Harmon tackle the runner against Bearden on 10/13 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

The Bulldogs would find their stride though, embarking on an 11-play, 80 TD drive that was capped off by a 15-yard TD pass.  Farragut’s offense started possession and after picking up two first downs, had to punt the ball away to Bearden.  The Bulldogs wasted little time moving the ball to the Admirals’ 25-yard line, but Wyatt Lucas ended the threat with his second interception of the first half.  The Admirals carried a 10-7 lead to the locker room at halftime.

The Admiral defense would come up big yet again on the first drive of the second half.  Senior LB Drew Butler stepped in front of the Bearden receiver forcing a deflection that landed right in the hands of fellow senior DB Griffen Swicegood.   Swicegood’s first INT of the season and seventh of his career setup the Admirals offense at Bearden’s 34-yard line.  The ensuing 6-play drive was capped off by a 4-yard Neyland Harmon touchdown run, extending the Admiral lead to 17-7 with 8:45 left in the 3rd.  The Bulldogs would answer again though, via a 12-play touchdown drive that made it 17-14 with 3:12 left in the 3rd.

Alex Williams sacks the quarterback against Bearden on 10/13 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

On the ensuing drive, a Gavin Wilkinson to Braden Collins touchdown connection for 22 yards capped off a 10  play, 82 yard drive that put the Admirals ahead 23-14 with :29 left in the 3rd quarter.  RB Isaiah Gibbs would carry the ball on runs of 21, 10, and 17 yards to lead the Admirals on their touchdown drive.

On the following drive for the Bulldogs, Neyland Harmon’s tackle for loss on first down, an incompletion on second down, and Alex Williams’ sack on third down forced a Bulldogs’ punt on 4th and 20 from their own 17-yard line.

Isaiah Gibbs catches a pass against Bearden on 10/13 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

The Farragut offense setup shop at their own 44-yard line, this time it only took 7 plays for the Admirals to find the end zone.  The drive started with WR Tanner Corum’s 16-yard catch and run into Bearden territory.  RB Isaiah Gibbs carried for 7 and 16 yards on back to back carries.  Following a misfire in the end zone and a sack, the Admirals found themselves facing 3rd-and-20.  Wilkinson would connect with Collins for 14 yards to set up the Admirals final touchdown.  Facing 4th-down-and-6, Gavin Wilkinson would hit Isaiah Gibbs for a 12-yard touchdown catch to extend the Admirals’ lead.  With 8:41 left to play, Farragut led 29-14.

Caleb Kuhn sacks the quarterback against Bearden on 10/13 PHOTO CREDIT: Carlos Reveiz/Ashley Wathen, CRFOTO.com

Senior LB Cade Burkey would sack the Bearden QB to end the following Bearden drive. After another quick drive by the offense and Griffen Swicegood punt, the Bulldogs had to play from their own 2-yard line.  Senior DE Nnamdi McSwine would force a holding penalty in the end zone resulting in a safety.  The Ads would conclude the scoring for the night and hang on to beat Bearden 31-14.

The Admirals improve to 8-1 overall and 4-1 in region play.  The Admirals will have a week off next week, which is a much welcomed by the players and coaches.  The Admirals will be back in action on Thursday night, October 26th, at Hardin Valley.

A special thanks to Carlos Reveiz and Ashley Wathen of CRFOTO for the action shots from the game.  Be sure to checkout CRFOTO.com every week for a full photo gallery from Friday’s game.  See a photo you like?  They are also available for purchase directly from his website.  Click here for this week’s photos.

OFFICIAL GAME STATS

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