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“Well That Escalated Quickly”
Let’s face it, we all knew Class 2A was stacked in 2017, but we all looked at the Week 0 matchups and figured a the Top 10 would take a few casualties. There were athletic 6A teams, there were last years’ Semi-Finalists from other classes, there were larger schools with multiple Mr. Football candidates, there was even an Out of State powerhouse. Instead the Top 10 rattled off a 9-1 combined record, the lone loss by Somerset in a game they led most of the night.

The Top 5 was especially stellar. Both Danville and DeSales looked very impressive against highly regarded 6A competition. Danville thoroughly dismantled 6A Frederick Douglass behind a dominating Defensive performance. The uber-athletic Broncos were held under 125 total yards, the Ads also added a pick 6 by the dynamic Dmauriae VanCleave. DeSales’ biggest question mark heading into the season was their Offensive ability after struggling at times in 2016. The Colts gained almost 325 total yards from a balanced backfield led by Tyrell Watkins. Watkins found pay dirt twice and ran the ball for 73 yards. DeSales also had a Pick 6 of their own by Santonio Hickman.

LCA and doppleganger CAL both won with relative ease against larger foes many thought would play them tougher. CAL kept South Oldham, a 5A Semi-Finalist last season, at arm's’ length all night behind a stingy defense. Milton Wright also made an impact on Offense rushing, receiving, and even throwing. Wright scored a rushing TD but his 3/3 passing performance, including a TD, may have been the most alarming for other Class 2A teams. LCA was a bit shaky against 3A Waggener early on, but found their rhythm in a big way and showcased one of the State’s most balanced Offenses. Five different Eagles found the endzone in a multitude of ways as LCA gained over 400 Total Yards. What was the scariest part of the night? LCA’s dynamic RB Dillon Wheatley actually had an uncharacteristic “off-night” gaining only 49 yards on 11 carries.

Cardinals Downgrade Tornadoes To A Mild Shower
It’s easy to take what Mayfield did this weekend and lose perspective. Running clock wins by Mayfield are pretty common sights for one of the State’s top programs pound for pound. Union City, TN is not your average cupcake though.

One of Tennessee’s strongest small school programs, Union City was confident that they could open the season against a Mayfield team many expected to have to replace several key players and multi-year starters. Mayfield ambushed Union City and never tapped the brakes handing the Golden Tornadoes one of their most lopsided losses of the past decade.

Connor Guthrie was an unknown commodity for the Cardinals taking over for one of the program’s most prolific QB’s in Landon Arnett. Though Guthrie may not have the dominant arm of Arnett, he proved that he could make up for it with his versatility. Guthrie was a breakout performer with his dual threat ability, he also was all over the field on Defense.

Bearcats VisitNich And Leave 1-0
Walton-Verona has higher expectations this year than any season in the school’s brief history. The veteran squad travelled to East Jessamine for the headliner matchup of the Bowl against the host 4A Jaguars.

East Jessamine was an 8-4 team last season so many expected this game to be a measuring stick to see if Walton-Verona will in fact be a legitimate Top 10 level team. After falling behind 14-0 early on the Bearcats made some adjustments and the Offense began rolling behind a mix of ball control and explosive plays. Once the dust had settled the Bearcats had outscored the Jaguars 43-6 over the last three quarters en route to the 23 point victory.

Perhaps the most surprising note of the night was a Bearcat passing game that was very effective. Walton-Verona only threw for approximately 325 yards all of last season. Friday alone the Bearcats nearly accounted for a third of that production on the back of Garrett Jones. Even more surprising, W-V never threw a single passing score over the span of 2016. Jones checked that box Friday with a 25 yard toss to Zach Clinkenbeard.

Around the Class
-Perhaps one of the most surprising scores was Butler County taking it on the chin 42-24 to 4A Logan County. The Cougars held the State’s longest losing streak until ending 2016 with a win over Todd County Central, Butler County had defeated them soundly 53-14 a year ago.
Speaking of Todd Central, the Rebels ended an 11 game losing streak with a 14-6 win over 4A Breckinridge County. Their next two games against Fort Knox and Caverna are certainly winnable as well and Coach Broady’s squad may have a chance at a surprising 3-0 start.

-Owensboro Catholic took the field with their expectation tank full against 6A Daviess County. The Aces left the game with a 1-0 record, but the going was not exactly smooth. Daviess County threw for 370 yards and Marquel Tinsley torched the Catholic secondary routinely. Owensboro Catholic came through in the clutch, but the porous pass defense will certainly be something worth monitoring in a class full of potent Offensive teams.

-One of the best shootouts of the opening weekend was Washington County’s 46-36 win over 1A Campbellsville. The Commanders not only boast one of Kentucky’s top nicknames, they also best one of the state’s most under the radar QB talents in John Floyd. Floyd threw for 136 yards and 2 TD’s and tacked on 103 a score on the ground.

On Deck:
Somerset at 1A #5 Williamsburg- No rest for the weary Jumpers as they try to rebound from a Week 0 loss by travelling down I-75. It’s hard to say a Week 1 game may be a turning point, but with Somerset’s upcoming schedule this may be the most winnable game until the season finale.

Newport Central Catholic vs. 6A Cooper- NewCath was far from sterling in their season opening victory against 4A Scott. The Breds stumbled out of the starting gate and struggled to maintain consistency on Offense, but were able to rely on a tough Defense to hold the day. Cooper has handled NewCath in recent years, but the Jaguars seem to be a bit lower in their talent pool. A win by NewCath will go a long way toward keeping them in the same breathe of the Class’ top tier of teams.

Lloyd Memorial vs. 1A #1 Beechwood- Anytime you take on the #1 team it deserves a second glance. LLoyd looked good in their season opener over West Jessamine but the defending Class 1A Champs will surely be a much stiffer test.

Worth A Closer Look:
Monroe County vs. 4A #4 Franklin-Simpson- The Falcons are flying well below the horizon after a pair of disappointing seasons, but Monroe looked sharp by vanquishing 3A Trigg County in relative ease. Ty Mink is a star and plays all over the field. Franklin-Simpson, last year’s 4A Runner-Up, is still smarting from a beat-down at the hands of Elizabethtown and if Monroe County can jump out quick they may be able to make the wildcats uncomfortable.