The stage is set for Friday night’s Dobyns-Bennett vs. Science Hill gridiron collision: It will be unbeaten vs. unbeaten in a top-five battle at J. Fred Johnson Stadium in Kingsport.
The Hilltoppers (9-0) moved up one spot to No. 5 just in time for their Big 8 Conference showdown against the Indians (9-0), who held firm at No. 4 in The Associated Press Tennessee Class 6A football poll that came out Monday.
Maryville (9-0), Siegel (9-0) and Whitehaven (9-0) remained the top three teams in 6A.
Elizabethton and Sullivan North didn’t even have to be in action to move up in the 3A poll. The Cyclones (7-2) and the Golden Raiders (8-1) — both idle last week — jumped one place to sixth and seventh, respectively, after the team that was just ahead of them, Milan (7-2), lost to Covington 24-13.
Alcoa (8-1) and CAK (9-0) stayed tied for the top 3A spot.
In 5A, the rankings — led by Beech (9-0) — were largely unchanged, including Daniel Boone (7-2) at No. 7.
Across the border in Virginia, John Battle’s first loss of the season sent the Trojans tumbling all the way from No. 4 to out of the Group A rankings.
Battle (8-1) lost 20-7 to previously unranked Honaker (7-1) on Saturday. The Tigers moved into the Group A poll at No. 9 while the Trojans’ points total left them just outside the top 10.
Essex (7-0), Clintwood (6-1) and Sussex Central (7-0) held at Nos. 1-3 in Group A.