In the race for the first football state playoff berth in Southeast Conference history, Thunder Mountain has a pretty good head start.
Cameron Fronimos took a pitch 44 yards for a touchdown on the third play from scrimmage, Ty McMichael scored on an 80-yard run later in the half and Thunder Mountain rolled over Ketchikan 33-0 at Fawn Mountain field Saturday.
The Falcons improved to 4-0 with a 2-0 mark in Southeast play that puts them atop the conference standings with only home games remaining.
Ketchikan dropped its conference opener to fall to 1-2 overall. The winner of the Southeast Conference earns the region's lone spot in the state playoffs.
On a night when most of Thunder Mountain's offensive starters played sparingly, Fronimos made the most of his chances.
The star senior put Thunder Mountain up 6-0 barely one minute into the game, then closed the first-half scoring by bouncing outside on a draw and sprinting down the right sideline for a 55-yard score. The ensuing extra point made it 27-0, and Fronimos finished with 98 yards rushing on three attempts.
He got plenty of help from a Falcons attack that moved the ball at will against the Kings early.
Senior quarterback Camden Thomas hit senior tailback Ben Hotch with a 16-yard pass that made it 12-0 midway through the first quarter, and McMichael's weaving 80-yard score early in the second made it 20-0.
The scoring slowed after halftime with a number of Thunder Mountain's starters grabbing spots on the bench, but sophomore Villie Topou tossed a 14-yard touchdown pass with 2:53 left in the third quarter to make it 33-0.
Meanwhile, the only Ketchikan fireworks came when someone far from Fawn Mountain field shot off a few of the colorful rockets late in the third period.
Ketchikan's five offensive possessions in the first half yielded a punt, three interceptions and a turnover on downs. Even the return of junior quarterback Nikk Silva, who missed the first three weeks of the season with a heel injury, didn't help. Silva split time under center with backup quarterback Shiloh Mackey.
Junior tailback Luke Purschwitz ripped off a couple hard runs for the Kings but didn't play much in the fourth quarter and appeared to be nursing a hand injury late in the game.
Playing against Thunder Mountain's backups in the second half, Ketchikan stuck with the Falcons and experienced some success moving down the field.
But it didn't result in any scores, and the Kings' final chance - 37-yard field goal attempt by senior Xavier Jones -as snuffed out by the Thunder Mountain special teams unit as time expired.
TMHS coach Bill Byouer could not be reached for comment.