SNEEDVILLE — Here are the “unofficial and incomplete” vote totals from Hancock County’s Aug. 6. 2020 State Primary and County General Election.
With all seven precincts reporting, a total of 1,132 persons cast ballots in early voting, absentee, or on-site voting, according to information provided by the Hancock Co. Election Commission.
In county-level races, Assessor of Property Bill Seal, who was unopposed in that race, won re-election to another term, and two new faces will take their seats on the Hancock Co. Board of Education.
In District Two, Jamie Stanifer defeated challenger Evan W. Seal by a vote of 165 to 156. Stanifer will replace outgoing BOE member Carl Reed.
In the District Five race, Jerry W. Hopkins won re-election in an uncontested race. Hopins will replace outgoing BOE member Jeff Stapleton.
On a district level, GOP State Senator Frank Niceley and State Representative Gary W. Hicks, Jr., who were unopposed by Republicans or Democrats, both won re-election to their respective seats.
In the U.S. Senate race, Republican Bill Hagerty — who was endorsed by President Donald Trump — carried Hancock County with 529 votes, and also carried the state, while Democrat James Mackler led the field in that party’s Hancock primary with 20 votes. Statewide, however, Memphis political newcomer Marquita Bradshaw pulled out a victory over her Democratic rivals, and will face Republican Hagerty in the Nov. 3 general election.
In the race to determine the new First Congressional District of Tennessee member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Republican and Kingsport native Diana Harshbarger, a pharmacist, did not carry the vote in Hancock County but did pull out a district-level win. In the Nov. 3 election, Harshbarger will face Democrat Blair Walsingham, a Hawkins County farmer and USAF veteran, who received 25 votes in Hancock County and carried the district in Democratic balloting.
Current Congressman Phil Roe is retiring and did not seek re-election to the U.S. House seat.
Tennessee’s First Congressional District includes all of Carter, Cocke, Greene, Hamblen, Hancock, Hawkins, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi, and Washington counties, and parts of Jefferson and Sevier counties.
The vote totals listed had not yet been certified and, until that time, should be considered “unofficial and incomplete”.
Clifford Adkins — 13
Natasha Brooks — 18
Byron Bush — 9
Roy Dale Cope — 7
Terry Dicus — 4
Tom Emerson, Jr. — 5
George S. Flinn, Jr. — 17
Bill Hagerty — 529
Jon Henry — 8
Kent A. Morrell — 3
Glen L. Neal, Jr. — 4
John E. Osborne — 1
Aaron L. Pettigrew — 10
David Schuster — 2
Manny Sethi — 304
Jay Adkins — 18
Phil Arlinghaus — 7
Richard Baker — 7
Chance L. Cansler — 2
John Clark — 109
Rusty Crowe — 343
Steve Darden — 15
Chad Fleenor -5
Robert D. Franklin — 7
Josh Gapp — 161
Diana Harshbarger — 117
David B. Hawk — 28
Timothy Hill — 63
Chuck Miller — 7
Carter M. Quillen — 9
Nichole Williams — 34
Frank S. Niceley — 714
Gary W. Hicks, Jr. — 818
Marquita Bradshaw — 22
Gary G. Davis — 14
Robin Kimbrough — 13
James Mackler — 20
Mark Pickrell — 6
Chris Rowe — 36
Larry J. Smith — 8
Blair Walsingham — 25
No candidate qualified
No candidate qualified
Rodney Fugate — 52
Rachel T. Fuentes — 53
Bill Seal — 942
Evan W. Seal — 156
Jamie Stanifer — 165
Jerry W. Hopkins — 130
Doug Lamb (I) — 122
Willie Neil Lamb (I) — 220
Gary Lynn Nichols (I) — 111
Ricky K. Johnson (I) — 125
No candidate qualified
Stevie Joe Sizemore (I) — 55
Charlie W. Cole (I) — 92
Monte J. Morse II (I) — 33
Carma Dennis McGee
To Retain: 548
To Replace: 169
SNEEDVILLE — With uncertainty hanging in the air for this year’s football season, the Hancock County Indians are preparing and anxious to take the field.
The team had hoped to begin the season with an Aug. 21 home game vs. Cosby, but as of this week’s presstime, it appears that the schedule (as published elsewhere in this issue) could be delayed by two weeks or more.
The Indians had a 3-7 record last year, with three of the losses close heartbreakers. Head Coach Brandon Gibbs said some of the losses were from giving up big plays. “This year we’ve got to keep things in front of us and not give up big plays,” he said.
Gibbs stated that this will be the youngest team he’s ever coached.
The Indians lost several seniors from last season, including some of the team’s leaders. There are nine freshmen on the roster this year, and Gibbs predicts that three or four of them could be starters. The Indians return only three starters on offense and four on defense.
Gibbs said he has been impressed with the freshmen; “they are good kids, willing to compete.”
Several seniors are poised to have outstanding seasons.
Quarterback Devon Blevins returns from a rib injury that caused him to miss much of last season. Coach Gibbs said that Blevins is the team’s top returning passer, rusher and tackler as the starting strong safety. Gibbs added that Blevins is excited about the season, put a lot of work in on his own, and is a little faster and stronger. Blevins has taken on the responsibility of being a senior and is trying “to step up and be a leader, we are a much younger team than last year”.
Blevins added that he thinks the Indians may pass more; “last year the team could power over people, this year we’re a younger team. Gibbs has noticed the maturity in his quarterback, saying, “Devin is putting the team on his shoulders and has improved as a leader”.
Blevins said his goal for the team is to return to the playoffs.
Gibbs said that Tyler Gibson is the team’s top lineman. He will play some at guard and center. Gibbs said the Gibson “is quick off the ball we can get a push from him.”
Gabe Turner will be switching to tailback after spending his career at wide receiver. Gibbs said that Turner “has some speed and can be explosive. He’s a little bigger and stronger than last year.” Turner knows playing tailback is a big responsibility and said one of his goals at his new position is to “hold on to the ball.” Coach Gibbs said that Turner has been really dedicated, so much that he may have been at the stadium even more than himself.
Sam Tabler returns from injury for his senior season. He started as a freshman and sophomore but missed several games as a junior. He said he is “ready to come back stronger than ever.”
Cameron Davis started at defensive end last year and returns for his senior season, Coach Gibbs Davis should be the team’s top pass rusher.
The defense lost all the starting linebackers to graduation Coach Gibbs said that junior Jarod Bolden will be the starting middle linebacker, making the calls on defense. He was the first linebacker off the bench last season. The secondary will be anchored by strong safety Devon Blevins. Gibbs said that Blevins is good at filling the gaps and making open-field tackles.
The Indians coaching staff is made up of Gibbs and assistants David Smith and Phil Blevins.
The Indians have had to scramble to put a schedule together, as they had to cancel three games with Virginia schools, as VA schools are not planning to play due to covid 19.
Currently, the Indians plan to play Unaka and Cumberland Gap twice each this season.
The Indians were scheduled to open their season at home on August 21 against Cosby, but that now appears to be unlikely. More updates will be published in the Eagle and posted to the newspaper’s website as they become available.
SNEEDVILLE — Football Friday nights are important events in Sneedville.
The stadium is filled at Hancock County High School as the community turns out to support the Indians.
For fans, parents, family members and faculty, it’s more than a game, it’s a community event. Surprisingly, though, football is a fairly new sport for the Indians, with its roots going back to about 2000.
According to Mike Gibson, the first organized football team was formed in August 2000, and played in the Morristown Youth Football Association.
From 2000-2004 there was only youth football in Sneedville. In 2003, this team left the Morristown YFA and joined the Tri-State Football Association, which included teams in Tennessee, Kentucky and Virginia.
In 2003 construction on the football field was begun. Darrell Fain, from Hawkins County, was hired as coach. Gibson and Fain approached the school board regarding the purchasing of equipment.
There was only a middle school team for two years, but in August, 2006, the Indians played their first High School football game.
Their first win came in 2008; an overtime victory against North Greene.
Clark Powers, 2006-2007;
Pat Lindelow, 2008-2010;
Darrell Miller, 2011-2012;
Phil Blevins, 2013-2015; and,
Brandon Gibbs, 2016-present.
Assistant coaches through the years have included Michael Willis, Brandon Gibbs, David Smith, and Phil Blevins.
ROGERSVILLE — If you felt an odd vibration Sunday morning, or heard dishes rattling in cabinets around 8:07 a.m., it wasn’t your imagination ... it was a 5.1 magnitude earthquake that happened along the North Carolina-Virginia state line about 2.5 miles southeast of Sparta, NC, in Alleghany County, or about 80-90 miles E/NE of Rogersville, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
The quake, which was the strongest to occur in North Carolina since a 5.5 magnitude quake happened near Asheville in 1916, was at a depth of about two miles.
The moderate quake was the sixth in that area in a 25-hour span, the USGS said. A series of smaller quakes began about 7:05 a.m. on Saturday, the strongest of which was a 2.6 magnitude tremor that struck about two miles south of Sparta at 1:57 a.m. Sunday.
The quake was felt as far south as Augusta, Georgia, and as far north as Staunton, Virginia, including by residents of Hawkins and Hancock counties in NE Tennessee.
Some area residents reported a few framed pictures being knocked off bedside tables during the tremor, which lasted for a few seconds.
The USGS cautioned that aftershocks are still possible this week in the region, some of which could be smaller or greater than the 5.1 temblor.
According to the USGS, when multiple quakes occur in a small region, the chance of a larger earthquake is greater.
The town of Sparta, which was at the epicenter of the quake, experienced some minor damage with bricks shaken loose on older building, and some chimney issues, but no broken windows, according to an official there. A seven-year old boy there did suffer a minor cut to his knee when a picture frame fell on him. His was the only report of an injury.
North Carolina does not have active fault zones, but Sarah Carmichael, an associate geology professor at Appalachian State University, said in published reports that small quakes in the state are “associated with very old faults that formed during the building of the Appalachian mountains.”
“The faults themselves aren’t active anymore in terms of tectonics, but as the North American plate moves/shifts with time and builds up stress, these little faults will be the things that can move a bit to diffuse some of the stress on the plate,” Carmichael told the Winston Salem Journal.
According to the USGS, the quake occurred as a result of “oblique-reverse faulting in the upper crust of the North American plate”.
The event likely happened due to “a moderately dipping fault either striking to the northwest or south,” the USGS said.
“This earthquake occurred in the interior of the North American plate. Such mid-plate earthquakes are known as intraplate earthquakes and are generally less common than interplate earthquakes that happen near tectonic plate boundaries. This earthquake was preceded by at least four small foreshocks ranging from M 2.1-2.6, beginning about 25 hours prior to the mainshock,” the USGS added.
Large earthquakes are relatively uncommon in the region directly surrounding the Aug. 9 event, although moderately damaging earthquakes do strike the inland Carolinas every few decades, and smaller earthquakes are felt sporadically every year or so, the agency added.
The largest recent earthquake to impact the east coast was the magnitude 5.8 Mineral, Virginia earthquake on August 23, 2011.