NEW MADRID -- The New Madrid County Central 7th and 8th grade football teams opened the season on Thursday at Kennett.
The 8th grade Eagles picked up right where last year's undefeated bunch left off, shutting out the Indians 24-0 in dominating fashion.
The Eagles opened the game with a great defensive stand. Then the offense took over and, by the middle of the first quarter, had points on the board with Carlandas Thornton's 17-yard touchdown run. G'Darius Stevenson had long runs on the drive and also punched in the two-point conversion to send the Eagles up 8-0.
Both teams struggled in a penalty-marred second quarter.
But after halftime, NMCC controlled the action, dominating on both sides of the ball.
Stevenson ran for a 55-yard score and Jamareia Jones scored on a 10-yard reverse. Isaac Ray and Brandon Johnson both had extra point conversions.
NMCC's hard-hitting defense was led by Keith Holmes who had an interception and Xavier McFerren who had a fumble recovery. The defense passed its sternest test in the second quarter holding Kennett, which had a first-and-goal on the NMCC 2, out of the end zone.
In 7th grade action, the Eagles were defeated in a close contest 16-14. Lamonte Nelson and Lorenzo Hill both ran for scores and C.J. Chism had a key fumble recovery.