Hornets Advance to District Championship

The Hamilton Hornets traveled to Bethany last Friday evening where they looked to avenge an early season loss to the Bulldogs, but this time the looser goes home.

Unlike the regular season opener, this game would be played in cool, rainy, wet conditions, making throwing the ball very difficult. South Harrison would strike first on an 11 yard touchdown run by quarterback Stanton Blake. The extra point kick failed and the Bulldogs were up 6-0 with 6:42 remaining in the opening quarter. South Harrison would strike again with 1:22 left in the first quarter when Blake scored from the 8 yard line. The 2-point conversion run by J.D. Johnson made the score 14-0. 

The second quarter found the Hornets facing a 2nd and 7 at the Bulldog 14. 5 seconds into the 2nd quarter, Kyle Elliott got Hamilton on the board with a 4 yard run. Brock Swindler's kick made the score 14-7. Neither team was able to cross the goal line the remainder of the first half.

A key play during the 3rd quarter came on a defensive stop by Penney High. South Harrison had gotten the ball to the Hamilton 37, but the Hornets were able to stop the Bulldogs on 4th down to get the ball back. Later in the 3rd period Hamilton would make another good play when quarterback Jaran Richman punted the ball inside the 5 yard of South Harrison. The 3rd quarter ended with Penney High trailing 14-7.

The fourth quarter started with the Bulldogs looking at a 4th and 1 at their own 32. The play that set up the winning touchdown came early in the final period when Hamilton's Kenny Pulley went through the middle of the South Harrison line to block a punt near mid field. With 7:59 left in the game, Korby Ford ran up the middle 9 yards for the score. Coach Obert's decision to go for two proved to be the difference. T.C. East ran right for the 2-point conversion and a 15-14 Hornet lead. 

However, the Bulldogs would not go quietly. South Harrison would move the ball to just outside the Penney 10 yard line. Three downs and 6 yards later the Bulldogs were faced with a 4th and 4 just inside the 5 yard line. With 1:29 remaining in the contest, the Hornet defense saved the day and the season by stopping the ball carrier after a short gain.

The leading tackler in the game was Kenny Pulley with 17 (1 for loss) plus the punt block. Korby Ford was next with 15 (1 for loss), followed by Kyle Elliott and Garrett Trosper (1 for loss) with 12, Tyler Trosper's 9, Brock Swindler had 8, LaTroy Harper and Jaran Richman with 6 each, T.C. East (1 for loss) and Mason McFall 5 apiece, Derek Dixon 2, and Drake Brown and Wyatt Gregory 1 each. T.C. East was the leading rusher with 87 yards on 13 carrries. Korby Ford ran for 36 yards on 4 carries and a TD, Jaran Richman 29 yards on 6 rushes, and Kyle Elliott ran 3 times for 20 yards and a touchdown. Richman completed 1 pass in just 7 attempts to LaTroy Harper for 5 yards, and punted the ball twice for a 35 yard average. McFall also punted once for 32 yards.

Penney's record improves to 8-3, but more importantly the win has the Hornets hosting the District Championship game this Friday night versus the Maysville Wolverines, winners over the top seeded Polo Panthers. Head Coach Caleb Obert had this to say after an exhausting game against the Bulldogs. "What a great finish to a game! Special teams played a major role with some good punts and the blocked punt that gave us a lot of momentum." Regarding the next opponent, Obert stated, "Maysville is playing some good football. It should be another excellent game." 

The Caldwell County News

101 South Davis
P.O. Box 218
Hamilton, MO 64644
Phone: 816-583-2116

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