By: J. Daniel Pearson
Take a relatively young, inexperienced team, play without your head coach (Covid protocols), have about a dozen players – including your starting quarterback – miss the game for a variety of reasons and toss in a big, fast opponent and you pretty much have the recipe for a lopsided high school football game.
Those factors all came to fruition at Austin Tindall Park on Thursday night, as Hagerty (2-1) raced out to a huge lead in the second quarter before settling for a 44-0 win over struggling Tohopekaliga.
“We simply were outplayed in every phase,” Assistant Coach Chris Johnson said after the game. “We’re a really young team playing a bunch of sophomores and freshmen and we were missing a bunch of guys because of injury including our quarterback Kam Davis-Roberts (Concussion protocol). But still, we didn’t get the overall effort we should have gotten from everyone. We made it pretty easy on their offense.”
The Huskies scored on their first seven possessions, piling up a 41-0 lead with eight minutes remaining in the second quarter which resulted in the game going to a running clock by agreement of the head coaches.
Hagerty got off to a fast start, ripping off big play after big play in the first 16 minutes of the game – scoring the seven touchdowns on just 16 offensive plays. Felix Antwone got Hagerty on the board on the Huskies’ first possession, capping off a five-play, 51-yard drive on a 13-yard touchdown run. It would be the longest drive Hagerty would need in the first half.
One possession later, Hagerty used just one play to score as Jeremiah Williams broke off an 80-yard run. Ryan Frawig would then make it 20-0 one possession later on a 13-yard scoring pass from Anthony Benzija. On the next Hagerty possession, Benzija hit Caleb Barber on a deep post for an 83-yard touchdown.
The Tigers would turn the ball over on a fumble on the next possession and John Scarelli would run it over from the 6 one play later to make it 34-0. Scarelli would tack on a second touchdown in the half after Tohopekaliga turned the ball over on downs – this time scoring from 10-yards out.
All told, the Huskies averaged more 18 yards a play in the 41-0 run. Williams rushed for 102 yards on just four carries, Scarelli rushed for 41 yards and scored twice on six carries and Benzija completed three of four passes for 109 yards and two touchdowns.
Hagerty emptied its bench in the second half, tacking on a field goal on their three second half possessions. Playing short-handed, Toho was limited to just 33 yards of total offense. Luis Rivera led the Tigers with 23 rushing yards on eight carries.
With the loss, Toho fell to 1-4 on the season and have been shut out in three consecutive games. They return to action next Friday, playing Cypress Creek (1-3).