Mountain Home received the ball first and, after three straight running plays produced just seven yards, was forced to punt.
Jerome, on its first play from scrimmage, connected on a pass play for big yards, with Zach Thibault hitting Cody Bowman for 36 yards and a first down at the Mountain Home 16-yard line. After that play, Mountain Home's defense rose to the occasion, forcing Jerome to turn the ball over on downs at the Mountain Home 10-yard line.
Two series later, Mountain Home got a big pass play from Ben Ceccarelli to Ryan Eckstrom for 45 yards down to the Jerome 20-yard line.
The drive stalled and Jaime Martinez missed a 42-yard field goal that was wide left.
Jerome then took over on its own 20. Zach Thibault quickly hooked up with Colton Parsons on an 80-yard touchdown pass as Jerome scored first and led 7-0 with 2:03 left in the first quarter.
Mountain Home started its next possession on its own five-yard line, but on third down Ben Ceccarelli's pass was intercepted by Simon Espinoza who returned it to the Mountain Home nine-yard line. Two plays later, Espinoza ran it in from nine yards out to put Jerome up 13-0 with nine seconds remaining in the first quarter.
After the two teams exchanged a couple punts, Jerome was able to move the ball down into the red zone, getting a first down at the Mountain Home 17. On the next play, Paul Tancredi intercepted a pass in the end zone to kill the Jerome drive.
Mountain Home then had an 11-play drive that moved the ball down to the Jerome 28 before turning the ball over on downs.
Jerome then went 72 yards in seven plays, Hayden Wheatley taking it in for the score from four yards out to put Jerome up 19-0 at halftime.
Jerome received the ball to start the third quarter and moved the ball 71 yards in nine plays, Zach Thibault connecting with Ethan Bragg for 16 yards and a score. The drive consumed nearly half the quarter.
Mountain Home went three-and-out on its first series of the second half and was forced to punt. The snap from center sailed over the punter's head into the end zone for a safety, and Jerome upped its lead to 28-0 with 5:59 left in the third quarter.
Mountain Home was forced to kick the ball back to Jerome, who returned it to the Mountain Home 49. Six plays later, Robert Ryder scored from two yards out to make it 34-0, Jerome, with 2:20 left in the quarter.
Another three-and-out by Mountain Home forced a punt and Jerome moved the ball 74 yards in eight plays, Simon Espinoza hitting Ethan Bragg for a 15-yard scoring strike, to put Jerome up 40-0 with 8:07 left in the game.
Mountain Home finally got into the end zone on its next possession, going 72 yards in eight plays with Ben Ceccarelli throwing 25-yards to Malik Whitfield for a score. The snap for the point-after try was bobbled so the PAT was no good, leaving the score 40-6 with 5:05 left in the game.
Mountain Home forced a punt and got the ball back in Jerome territory, but time ran out for them with the ball on the Jerome 16.
Tiger head football coach Aaron Rodney saw some positives to take out of the first outing of the season, but knows they have a long way to go yet.
"We knew going in that we were a pretty young team. We were returning just three varsity starters and we have a lot juniors, so it was a case of on-the-job training tonight. One of the things we asked the kids to do was keep fighting and not to quit and keep playing hard, and I think they did that.
"Obviously, the scoreboard doesn't reflect what we wanted. Hats off to Jerome, they're an awfully good football team.
"We're going to learn from this and we're going to get better. We've got to keep scraping through and keep playing, and that's what we have to do," Rodney said.
"We're going to build this program from the ground up and we're going to keep going forward and keep doing things. We're going to have to tweak things and keep after it and stay the course, and in the long run, we'll be okay."
Mountain Home rushed the ball 28 times for 80 yards, led by Jake Ryan, who had 63 yards on 21 carries.
Ben Ceccarelli completed nine of 24 passes for 136 yards and a touchdown. He had one pass intercepted. There were a number of passes on the mark, but not caught.
Pete Ramadan caught two passes for 24 yards, Ryan Eckstrom had one catch for 45 yards, Malik Whitfield caught one pass for 25 yards and a touchdown, Malcolm Freer and Paul Tancredi both had one catch for 12 yards, Jordan Pendleton caught one for eight yards and Jake Ryan had one catch for seven yards.
Mountain Home opens conference play this Friday night at Emmett against the Huskies. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. at Husky Stadium in Emmett.