The 2022 season has been nothing but statement win after statement win for East Nashville.
Last season, the Eagles put together a tough non-region schedule full of opponents in higher classes as a way to prepare for the postseason. That strategy worked out as the Eagles lost in those games, but still made it to their first state championship game.
East Nashville scheduled an identical non-region schedule this season but expectations were raised. Losses, large or small, were no longer looked at as moral victories.
The Class 3A Eagles beat Class 5A Green Hill 53-21 on Friday night, avenging one of their five 2021 losses. Added to wins over DII-AAA Father Ryan and 6A Independence, East Nashville (7-0) has avenged three of its five losses from last season – by an average of 23 points.
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"We got a plan and each week we know that we have to go and execute that plan," East Nashville receiver Frank Gordon said. "We execute each Friday, do our jobs and get back to work the next Monday. That senior class last year, they taught us a lot and got us to the state championship.
"This group, we want to make history like last year but right now we're focused on being the first team in school history to go 10-0 and then make some noise in the postseason."
Gordon said that he felt a little disrespected when he noticed that Green Hill (4-3) was only lining one defensive back up against him.
The Eagles' senior leader has had plenty of great games during his career but nothing like what he experienced Friday night, as he took all four of the passes he caught in for touchdowns and finished the night with 144 yards.
"Usually I get doubled but they didn't this game and that was honestly a little disrespectful," Gordon said, chuckling. "You can't put one person on me. After the first touchdown, I told Coach (Jamaal) Stewart after the first one to keep it coming my way."
While Gordon's production alongside quarterback Zacc Beard hasn't come as a surprise to Stewart, one player that has shocked him has been senior running back Tre'Quan Waters.
Waters played linebacker in 2021 but is now on offense to replace long-time starter Amarion Ford. He hasn't missed a beat.
He added to his list of 200-yard rushing nights against the Hawks, rushing for 284 yards and two touchdowns as he surpassed 1,000 yards for the season.
"Tre'Quan's not a selfish kid and will do whatever it takes to win, whether it's running the ball or setting up the pass block," Stewart said. "All these kids care about is winning and that's why we've had so much success this season. The foundation for this group was laid last year in Chattanooga and they're doing everything they can to get back there and feel that feeling again."
Reach Joe Spears at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Instagram, TikTok and Twitter @joe_spears7.
This article originally appeared on Nashville Tennessean: East Nashville football continues revenge tour, thumps Green Hill