By Kris Freeman, White House Football
Round three of a new rivalry made its way to the hometown, and White House High School found its way to the endzone quickly in a 28-7 victory over White House Heritage.
After playing two years on a neutral site at Vanderbilt Stadium, the two city rivals met at White House City Park in front of a standing-room only crowd. The Blue Devils made quick work of the scoreboard and never looked back with a convincing triumph, taking a 2-1 series lead. White House won years one and three.
“I really feel like our kids and our coaches did a great job with preparation for this week’s game,” said White House head coach Jeff Porter after his 249th career victory. “We played well defensively and we ran the football the way we wanted to and that is a credit to our kids and they way they got ready for the game, and a big credit to our coaching staff.”
The Blue Devils forced a three-and-out on the opening series and Steven Rankin threw a pinpoint delivery between two colliding defensive backs for a 61-yard touchdown pass to Luke Hopkins. The senior completed 6-of-13 for 123 yards and a touchdown, and Logan Trimmer’s PAT made it 7-0 with 9:33 left in the first quarter.
Hopkins caught three passes for 104 yards in the game, but the bulk of the Blue Devils power came on the ground. While White House Heritage struggled to maintain consistency moving the football, the hosts rushed 49 times for 305 yards.
Senior Trey Hyde carried 25 times for 159 yards and two touchdowns, and provided the second of three big plays. Hyde scored on a 67-yard run to the south end zone and a three-yard touchdown run.
After White House Heritage cut the lead to 21-7 with just under a minute to go on a nine-yard touchdown pass from Austin Gunter to Thadd Baker and Trent Burian added the extra point, White House put the cap on the night with a third big play.
Trying to run out the clock, White House handed off to junior Preston Long and the speedster found the endzone for his first career touchdown. The 87-yard run made it 28-7 when Trimmer added his fourth extra point.
“We take our hats off to Coach Pat Brown and that is a great program,” Porter said. “Now for us, the focus is on week two. We have one more week to get ready for district play in week three and we still have improvements we need to make.”
The Blue Devils put up 428 yards on 55 plays, holding White House Heritage to 164 yards on just 40 plays and forcing six punts. Branson Kramm punted all six times for an average of 37.1 yards. Kramm also caught four passes for 74 yards and helped set up the only score for the Patriots.
Gunter, a sophomore, completed 7-of-17 passes for 127 yards with a touchdown and an interception, but was sharp on the final drive of the game. He connected on three straight passes, including Kramm for 27, before striking Baker in the middle of the endzone with just under a minute left after a 21-yard completion to make it first and goal.
White House had 16 first downs and White House Heritage nine. The Patriots were plagued by six penalties including two personal fouls. Senior Kyle Fuhrer was the leading rusher with 12 carries for 35 yards.
Both teams travel in week two of the football season. White House Heritage (0-1) goes to Nashville Christian, and White House (1-0) plays at Goodpasture. Both games are non-region action.
“This is going to be a tough challenge, to have to go on the road and face Coach (Jerry) Joslin,” Porter added. “We are 0-for-against him and we need to go to Goodpasture and get a win next Friday and be ready when we come home in week three against Portland.”