The Panthers are on an upswing following a 28-7 victory over rival White House Friday night. Winless last season, Portland was skunked 41-0 in Week Zero by Beech, then managed to bounce back vs. White House.
The Golden Bears stand 2-0 after overpowering visiting McGavock High 45-14 Friday night.
While the Mt. Juliet offense continues to light up the scoreboard like a pinball machine, 99 points in two games, the defense has been stellar.
Senior linebacker Josh Belhu accounted for 18 tackles against the Raiders, giving him 31 stops in just two games. Safeties Cody Carr and Kyle Grace each intercepted McGavock passes and generally made life miserable for Raider receivers once they caught the football.
While the Mt. Juliet defense was keeping McGavock under control, the Bear offense was having a field day, piling up 386 yards in total offense.
Senior fullback Contrez McCathern led the way with 113 yards rushing and touchdown runs of nine, seven and 19 yards. Austin Chaplin added 72 yards on seven attempts while Caleb Hopkins rushed for 57 yards on eight carries and scored the games initial touchdown on a one-yard run in the first quarter. Hopkins also hauled in a 42 yard scoring pass from Nolan Chowbay with 53 second left in the first half -- sending the Bears to the locker room up 28-14.
Chowbay completed four of his seven passing attempts for 100 yards. Kicker Ryan Jenkins boomed a 41 yard field goal in the fourth quarter and was a perfect six-for-six on conversion kicks.
MJCA HOSTS EZELL-HARDING --Mt. Juliet Christian Academy will open East-Middle Region 2 play in TSSAA Division II Thursday as the Saints host Ezell-Harding. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Suey Field on the MJCA campus.
The Saints slid to 0-2 on the season following Friday nights 39-25 home loss to Red Boiling Springs.
MJ Christian led 7-0 as Noah Wilson scored the first of his three touchdowns on a 26 yard run with 4:51 remaining in the opening period.
The Bulldogs (now 2-0) responded by scoring on each of their next three consecutive possessions to take a 21-7 lead.
We started out well, our defense came out on fire, Coach Jake Roberts said, but we had three fumbles in the first half and that was pretty hard to overcome.
MJCA battled back and cut the margin to 21-14 with another Wilson touchdown -- this one on an 11 yard run with 1:15 to go before intermission.
RBS expanded the margin back out to three scores by returning the ensuing kickoff 85 yards for a score.
WATERTOWN WELCOMES HUNTLAND --Watertown High, idle last weekend, will be back on the gridiron Thursday as the Purple Tigers host Huntland High at Robinson Stadium.