The Arlington Tigers made a long bus trip down I-40 to take on the Dickson County Cougars Friday night, and the first quarter showed their fatigue and confusion. The Cougars dominated the opening stanza, taking a 14-0 lead with 3:38 left in the first, scoring on touchdown passes of 4 and 49 yards to Trey Hartsook and Houston Daniel, respectively. AHS answered with a seventeen yard touchdown strike before the end of the quarter, but the Cougars weren’t done. JeQuan Lewis capped off another Cougar scoring drive just three seconds into the second quarter, taking the ball in himself from one yard out to give Dickson County a 21-7 lead.
Arlington was able to answer about three minutes later, but miscues by the Cougars helped the West Tennesseans gain momentum. The 21-7 lead was cut to 21-14, then with 4:55 to go in the first half they tied the game at 21-21. The Tigers added a rushing touchdown and a receiving score to go up 35-21 at the half, and piled on 21 more points in the second half, to upend the Cougars 56-21. Arlington ultimately scored 49 unanswered points in the rout, and starting QB Drew Reed threw a season high 6 touchdowns in the Arlington rally. The Tigers made two mistakes the prior week that cost them a district title, but the hangover wasn’t apparent after the first 12 minutes in Dickson. The Cougars (8-3) managed 141 rushing yards and a score, and got two passing scores on just 64 yards through the air. They also gave up only 48 yards in penalties, but lost two fumbles in the season-ending loss.
The Cougars weren’t the only area team to fall in the first round, as Creek Wood, Clarksville, Sycamore, Cheatham County, Hickman County, Houston County, Springfield, Jo Byrns, and Columbia all were sent home early. Harpeth, Northeast, and Henry County were the only teams with local ties to advance to the second round of the TSSAA State Playoffs.