A fast-starting Henry County Patriots middle school football team scored touchdowns on its first four possessions to begin a 32-8 victory over Stewart County Thursday at Patriot Stadium.

The Patriots don’t get to celebrate the season-opening win for long as they will be back in action at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday with a road trip to Scotts Hill to face Henderson South. Patriot head coach Justin Cheek says he doesn’t know much about Henderson South as this will be the first meeting between the schools. He was deliriously happy with how the Patriots played against Stewart County.

“It was a good opener for us,” said Cheek. “We got to play a lot of kids and saw some guys really step up to play well. Overall, I think we still need to tackle better. On the good side, we were able to run the football effectively on offense. It was a good win but we have to keep improving.”

Patriot James Bobbitt had a strong game with 113 yards rushing and two touchdowns. Braiden Newell and Michael Tharpe also turned in good runs.

Bobbitt raced 14 yards to score the Patriots’ first touchdown in the first period with Tharpe running for the 2-point conversion.

Henry County erupted for 24 more points in the second quarter. Bobbitt scored on a 49-yard dash while Tharpe scored on a 52-yard run and Newell swept 62 yards for a touchdown. Jake Paschall passed to Newell for a 2-point conversion while both Tharpe and Bobbitt ran for 2-point conversions to push Henry County’s halftime lead to 32-0.

The Patriots played their junior varsity players for most of the second half. While the group didn’t score, Cheek was pleased with their effort.

Stewart County got on the scoreboard with 1:30 left in the contest and added the 2-point conversion to make the final score 32-8.

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