Hornets bomb Lions with aerial assault in 42-6 victory

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Harrisburg used a big play offense, scoring on their first five possessions, and coasted to a 42-6 3A-3 conference victory over the Lions Friday night at Manila.

Harriburg running back Blake Sanders (32) is pursued by Lions Tracey Reinhart (7), Seth Towles (27), and Tim Decker (74) in senior high football action Friday night at Manila.

Sophomore quarterback Zach Davis fired five touchdown passes to five different receivers as the Hornets remained undefeated at 5-0 on the season and 2-0 in league play.

Davis got Harrisburg off to a quick start with a 52 yard touchdown pass to Will Bornhoft at the 5:02 mark of the opening period. Jake Streeter ran in the two point conversion to give Harrisburg an 8-0 lead.

Davis struck again on the Hornet's next possession, connecting with Streeter on a 62 yard bomb with 4:09 left in the opening period. The point after attempt failed, leaving the Hornets with a 14-0 lead.

Harrisburg quarterback Zach Davis (12) gets pressure from Lion defenders Seth Towles (27) and Tim Decker (74) Friday night at Manila. (Town Crier photos/Trent Fletcher)

Davis continued his aerial assault, hooking up with Kevin Harkey from 24 yards out to complete a five play, 77 yard drive on Harrisburg's next possession. Davis' two point conversion pass to Spencer Brown upped the Hornet lead to 22-0 with 37 seconds left in the opening quarter.

Harrisburg scored on their fourth consecutive possession early in the second quarter, as Davis found Harkey on a 22 yard pass over the middle, giving the Hornets a 28-0 lead at the 10:12 mark. The two point conversion attempt failed.

After another three and out on Manila's next possession, the Hornets' Davis connected for his fifth touchdown pass of the first half when he completed a 12-yard touchdown strike to Justin Jones. The point after attempt was good, and the Hornets had a 35-0 lead with 8:33 left in the first half.

Manila got their initial first down on their next possession when Steven Green bolted 25 yards to set the Lions up at the Hornet 45 yard line. The Lions drove to the Harrisburg 26, but on fourth and three, Lion quarterback Josh Miles was picked off by Harkey, who raced 77 yards untouched into the end zone, giving the Hornets a 42-0 lead with 2:49 left before halftime.

Harrisburg's Spencer Brown wrestles Manila junior John Willbanks to the turf in senior high football action Friday night at Manila.

The Lions finally got untracked offensively in the second half, finishing the night with 244 yards of total offense. Unfortunately for Manila, they were only able to score one touchdown. The Lion's lone score came on a 50 yard touchdown pass and run from Miles to running back John Willbanks. Willbanks took in Miles' pass at the Hornet 40, cut across the field and rambled the rest of the way into the end zone. Manila's two point conversion attempt failed, leaving Harrisburg with a 42-6 lead with 7:35 to go in the game.

The Lions threatened one more time, driving to Harrisburg's 18, but came up short on three straight incompletions by Miles as the game ended.

Miles finished 7-22 passing for 94 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Brian Borden led all Lion receivers with four receptions for 37 yards. Willbanks finished with one catch for 50 yards and a score. Jared Burks caught one pass for four yards while Frankie Cowgill snared one pass for three yards. The Lions gained 150 yards on the ground on 31 carries, led by Willbanks who had 85 yards on 16 totes. Green finished the night with eight carries for 45 yards. Miles and Cowgill both had two carries for seven yards each while Borden had one carry for four yards.

The Hornets completed the night with 310 yards of total offense. Davis completed 10-15 passes for 286 yards and five touchdowns. Streeter led the Hornets with three catches for 94 yards and a touchdown. Bornhoft snared two passes for 59 yards and a touchdown while Harkey caught two passes for 46 yards and two scores.

"I thought we came out with something positive in the second half," said Manila Coach Toby Doke. "We talked at halftime about winning the second half, and we finally got on the board in the second half. We still have to make progress in the weight room and be more committed, and until we do that, we will continue to struggle. We are very young. We only have three seniors, and we have a good group of junior high players coming up, so the future of our football program is there. I know it's frustrating for our kids. It's hard to be patient. It's frustrating for me, but we are going to win. There's no doubt about that. We're just waiting on those opportunities."

Manila will return to action Friday night when they host Cave City. Kickoff is set for 7:30.

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