Another year, another Tates Creek crushing of Henry Clay.
The Commodores knocked out the Blue Devils 48-0 in the first game of the Adidas Kickoff Classic. It was the second straight season Tates Creek posted a shutout of Henry Clay in front of its home fans.
Before last season, Creek hadn't shut out a city opponent since 2006. The 48 points were the Commodores’ most in a win since a 54-48 double-overtime victory at Clark County on Sept. 7, 2007.
Former standouts on offense — Jackson Beerman, Turner Gentry, Peyton Burke — have gotten the lion's share of headlines in recent years but Coach Antoine Sims expects the defense to carry the torch in 2017.
It sure did Friday night: Creek held the Blue Devils to 149 total yards, including 68 on the ground. Darryl Bell and Willie McGhee each came up with interceptions, and Jaden Baird returned a fumble for a touchdown. The Commodores registered 10 tackles for loss; Teonte White was in one three himself.
Henry Clay chewed up nearly five minutes of game clock to start things but its first drive ended on an incomplete pass. Creek punted after its first drive but Elliott Brown forced a fumble on Ramond Jackon’s return, giving the Commodores possession at Henry Clay’s 15-yard line. Three plays later, Cam Workman found Laron Warner in the corner of the end zone for the first score.
Warner rushed for TDs on consecutive Creek possessions after his TD catch, and finished with 93 yards on 11 carries. He exited the game with cramps in the third quarter; he was playing defense for the Commodores, too.
“I’m feeling good,” Warner said after the game. “This is nothing.”
Workman started at quarterback, going 9-for-13 for 114 yards and two TDs. Sophomore Luke Duby played a good chunk of the second half, going 4-for-5 and two TDs — one to sophomore Mason Gentry, Turner’s brother, and another to junior Miles Thomas, the son of University of Kentucky assistant football coach Lamar Thomas.
Darrin Van Horn, a sophomore, was 9-for-11 for 81 yards and an interception for Henry Clay. Isaiah Adkins led the Blue Devils with 59 yards on five carries. Tyree Clarke had 100 yards on four punt returns; it would have been about double that if not for a return TD that got waved off because of a Blue Devils penalty.
Starting the season on such a high note is nice, but the celebration wouldn’t last long for Creek.
“I’m happy for ’em, but it’s gonna be short-lived,” Sims said. “We got another 30, 45 minutes, then it’s onto the next one.”
The Commodores will travel to Frederick Douglass next week. It will be the Broncos’ first home game in school history.
They’ll hop across town with a 1-0 record and positive momentum.
“We just wanted to come out strong, get going early,” Warner said. “We got our groove and we just went from there. We’re a hard team to beat when we got our groove.”
High school football coverage this weekend
Please be sure to visit Kentucky.com on Saturday morning for high school football coverage that did not meet Friday night’s print deadline.
Online, you can find all of Friday night’s scores from across the state, plus coverage of games around the city and area along with statistics, scores and videos.
In Sunday’s print edition, Herald-Leader high school sports writer Josh Moore will follow up with additional highlights from opening weekend along with all of Friday night’s scores and line scores and pictures.