Cyclones win see-saw battle with 'Horns in freshman game

from staff reports

   The Elizabethton Cyclone freshman team was given all it wanted Tuesday night by the Johnson County Longhorns in a 24-20 victory for the boys from 'Betsy at Dave Rider Field.
   The Cyclones jumped out to a 12-0 lead after the first quarter following a 14-yard pass from Weston Jeffers to J.C. Atkinson and a 50-yard interception return from James Peterson.
   The Longhorns answered back in the second quarter with two touchdowns from Tony Smith to give the visitors a 14-12 lead.
   Johnson County extended its advantage to 20-12 in the third quarter with a rushing touchdown from quarterback Jeffrey Brinker.
   The Cyclones rallied back to cut Johnson County's lead to 20-18 after Ryan Kennedy took a kickoff 70 yards to paydirt.
   Elizabethton scored the winning touchdown in the fourth quarter when Jeffers completed a 30-yard pass to Kennedy.
   It was a valiant effort for the Longhorns. The outcome might have been different if not for seven Johnson County turnovers.
   Jesse Hampton, Robbie Stinett, David Lyons and Jordan Peters all came up with fumble recoveries for the Cyclones.
   While the Longhorns continue to improve, Elizabethton runs its record to 6-1 overall and 5-0 in the Mountain Lakes.
   "It was a hard-nosed football game," EHS head coach Ryan Witten said. "A win is a win, and it's great for these kids."
   Said Johnson County head coach Austin Atwood: "We feel like our freshmen are as good as anybody. Tony Smith played well and Thomas Moore played both ways tonight, and did a great job. If we don't make the turnovers we might have won."
   EHS will play for the conference title next week at Sullivan Central. Johnson County will take on Tennessee High.