September in Review: Football Recap

Molly Wilgus, Staff Writer


First Game of the Season: Cyclones vs. Hilltoppers at Betsy 

August 19, 2022 

The Toppers pulled out the win against Elizabethton for the first time in five years in this game, ending with a score of 17-7. Kellen Hensley (#3), starting center for the Hilltoppers, described the game as “physical, well- executed, and fun.” Hensley notes that his most notable play was that he was able to pull around the edge to seal the defensive end of the Cyclones, gaining 15 yards towards the end zone.                                     

Loss at Anderson County

August 26, 2022

Unfortunately, at the first home game of the season, the outcome was a disappointing score of 48-6 with the Anderson County Mavericks dominating the Hilltoppers. The Mavericks pulled away quickly in the first quarter, leading 21-0. However, Derrick Smith (#8) had an interception in the 2nd quarter, which gave the team a sense of motivation.

Still, Anderson County proved to be more proficient in their pass and run plays, finishing the game with seven touchdowns. Javin Bryant (#23) ended up scoring in the last quarter, but it was not enough to secure a win.

Kevin Aimua (#34), defensive end, describes the game as overall, “disappointing, livid, and frustrating,” especially since Aimua admits he had zero tackles this game. He further explains, “It was a tough team, and an even tougher loss.” 

Westridge Wolves are put in the Doghouse 

September 2, 2022

The Toppers came out strong in the first quarter, pushing the ball down the field with great execution and turnovers by the defense. Slowly pulling away from the wolves, Toppers put up 21 points in the first half. Coming out of halftime strong with a punishing kick return, the Toppers continued to increase the lead. Tyler Moon (#5), starting slot receiver, scored three of the touchdowns in this game. When asked what his favorite play was, he answered, “Right out of halftime, I got a 98-yard kick return for a touchdown.” That being said, the wolves could not come up with a plan to score on the Toppers’ competitive defense. At the end, it was Tyler Moon on the running touchdown to seal the win. 

The Knox Powell Punishment

September 9, 2022

Starting out with confidence, the Toppers were up 14-10 at halftime, playing passing defense. However, Powell exposed the Hill with their running plays, taking the lead at the start of the second half. Emmett Watson (#14) scored the last touchdown on an 85-yard kick return, which led to an onside recovery by Trevor Whitson (#24). Derrick Smith (TSSAA player of the week for the Elizabethton game) says, “Defensively, we won that game.” Unfortunately, with only thirty seconds left, the Toppers were unable to drive down the field to even out the score, ending with a score of 24-31.                                                             

Win at William Blount 

September 16, 2022

Tyler Moon scored the first touchdown in just the first few minutes of the game, running 27 yards by bouncing to the right and cutting up the middle to the endzone. The offensive line did their job, scoring four more times before the end of the first half and making it a running clock for the rest of the game. The Governors did not have the strength to score against the tight Topper defense, ending the game with a score of 35-0.