Cullman shut out Grissom at Louis Crews Stadium on Thursday night, posting a convincing 23-0 victory in its season opener.
For coach Oscar Glasscock, the triumph carried more significance than a late August win normally does.
"I think down the road we'll see how this was more than a football game. It was a statement and a great night for high school football across the state. It gave our guys something to be excited about after being cooped up for so long. Every team has had to work through adverse conditions, so to pull off an event like this is what's it's all about," Glasscock said. "It was great to see our guys having fun and flying to the football."
Indeed, Cullman enjoyed its 2020 debut.
The Bearcats' defense bewildered Grissom all evening, and the offense provided timely contributions.
After a scoreless first quarter, Cullman broke through for a pair of touchdowns.
Max Dueland connected with Isaiah Jones for a 28-yard touchdown strike for the first score of the season, and Jake Dueland provided an 11-yard touchdown run late in the second quarter.
Cullman led 13-0 at the break.
Max Dueland added a 1-yard touchdown plunge in the third quarter, extending Cullman's cushion to 20-0. Brody Adams capped the Bearcats' scoring with a fourth-quarter field goal.
Glasscock had high praise for his defense.
"We played lights out all night. We came in thinking our defense would set the tone. Jaylen Hughey had a great game at linebacker. His instincts were off the charts. He was by far the best player on the field on both sides of the ball," Glasscock said.
Cullman, which hosts Jasper on Aug. 28, had two shutouts last season.
Good Hope 47, West Morgan 19
Tanner Malin, Colton Bagwell and Good Hope's offense are off to a resounding start in 2020.
Malin accumulated three touchdowns — two rushing and one passing — Bagwell added a pair of touchdowns on the ground, and the Raiders cruised in their season opener Thursday night at Trinity.
"It was a great feeling to get on the field and earn a victory. Our coaching staff and the players were excited to get out there after all of the uncertainties," said Good Hope coach Alan Scott. "Overall, we played a solid game. We have positive things to build on, and we realize the weaknesses we need to clean up."
Good Hope, which has won four straight season openers under Scott, commanded an early 13-0 lead at the end of the first quarter. Bagwell scored the opening touchdown of 2020 for Good Hope with a 3-yard plunge, and Malin added a 4-yard scoring surge later in the quarter.
The Raiders extended their cushion to 19-0 with 9:48 remaining in the second quarter on a Ethan Anderson 12-yard touchdown run.
After West Morgan's first touchdown of the season, Malin hooked up with Paydon Bagwell on a 2-yard touchdown pass, extending Good Hope's advantage to 27-7.
The Raiders tallied two more touchdowns in the third quarter. Malin registered a 20-yard touchdown with 9:38 to go in the frame, and Colton Bagwell provided a 1-yard scoring run.
Good Hope led 40-7 at the end of the third quarter.
Caleb Jones scored a 3-yard touchdown for the Raiders in the fourth quarter.
Good Hope hosts West Point on Aug. 28.
"We're going to enjoy this one, but we know we'll have our hands full next week. West Point is an outstanding team and is well-coached,” Scott said.