E.A. Sports Today

Curry favors century mark

Coach captures 100th victory at Cherokee County, Warriors secure first playoff spot since 2011

By Shannon Fagan
Cherokee County Herald

CENTRE – With the final few seconds ticking down on their 39-6 victory over Class 4A, Region 6 football rival Sardis Friday night, there were plenty of reasons the Cherokee County Warriors dunked a cooler full of ice on head coach Tripp Curry.

It was Senior Night. And the Warriors had just won their fifth straight game to clinch their first playoff appearance since 2011.

But the night was also special because Curry earned his 100th victory with the football program. He is 100-69 in 15 seasons with the Warriors and one victory shy of 150 for his career.

“We’ve been blessed to have some great athletes here,” said Curry, who was presented with a signed football from the team after the game. “At every school, you’re going to have periods of ups and downs, but for the most part, for the 15 years I’ve been here, we’ve had good athletes and we’ve been fortunate to win a lot of ball games.”

Curry said he had no idea coming into the week that he nearing 100 wins with the Warriors (5-3, 4-2). He got his first clue from his wife’s Facebook page, where a fan had posted a personal message to Curry to ‘go get your 100th win.’

“I didn’t know what that was talking about,” he said. “I thought they messed up, but I didn’t really pay attention to it.”

His players did.

“That was a special moment for our guys,” sophomore quarterback Tyren Dupree said. “It was great because it was senior night and we got a big win. We were thinking about that all day. We were like ‘We’ve got to get him his 100th win.’ He deserves it. He’s a good coach, and we’re glad we were able to give it to him.”

“We’d been thinking about it all day, and we were the ones who wanted to give it to him,” junior receiver Quartez Henderson added. “We tried to pitch a shutout, but we still got the win for him, and that’s all that matters.”

Dupree and Henderson played big roles in bringing the milestone. Dupree completed 16 of 23 passes for 207 yards and two touchdowns. Henderson caught six balls for 92 yards and two scores on back-to-back possessions in the second quarter and returned an interception for another touchdown. Jacob Graves rushed for 127 and a touchdown and also returned a punt for a score.

The Warrior defense smothered the Lions (3-5, 2-4), holding them to only 143 yards — 30 in the first half – and forcing four turnovers.

“All week, our kids were ready to play,” Curry said. “They beat us last year at their place (on a last-second touchdown). We thought we had them last year, but we had an extremely great defensive plan this time.

“Offensively, it wasn’t great, but we got the playmakers the ball, and when you get playmakers the ball, good things happen. We just try to get them the ball in space and let them go.”

Jacksonville 47, Hokes Bluff 20

HOKES BLUFF – Jacksonville made a bit of history with its big road win.

The Golden Eagles clinched a playoff spot for a record third-year in a row. They had gone in back-to-back years once before, under Rusty Burroughs in 1998 and 1999.

Nico Richmond scored four touchdowns in the first half as the Golden Eagles opened a 35-14 lead.

Crossville 21, White Plains 13

CROSSVILLE — In the Something’s-Gotta-Give Dept., Crossville scored its first region victory since 2013 and kept White Plains winless in the region.

The Lions (1-7, 1-5) snapped a 13-game region losing streak and a 19-game overall losing streak.

Cherokee County 39, Sardis 6

Sardis 0 0 6 0 — 6
Cherokee Co. 13 12 14 0 — 39

CC – Tyren Dupree 14 run (James Sewell kick), 7:18 1Q
CC – Jacob Graves 59 punt return (run failed), 5:44 1Q
CC – Quartez Henderson 11 pass from Dupree (kick failed), 9:48 2Q
CC — Henderson 53 pass from Dupree (run failed), 2:32 2Q
CC – Graves 35 run (Sewell kick), 10:36 3Q
CC – Henderson 39 interception return (Sewell kick), 8:51 3Q
S – Austin Hallmark 68 pass from Logan Gaskin (run failed), 7:44, 3Q

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