It was somewhat difficult to comprehend, and in some regards almost painful to watch.
For the last several weeks Hickory High football team’s offense has been playing at a high level. But few could fathom Farrell having the Hornets hang 60 on them Friday night.
“We’ve been in playoff mode since about four weeks ago. We just keep talking about finishing stronger, finishing stronger. The second half we’re comin’ out and finishing so much better,” summarized Hickory head coach Bill Brest following his Hornets’ 60-14 District 10 inter-region rout at Anthony J. Paulekas Stadium.
Hickory (6-1) held a modest 19-0 margin at intermission, but erupted for 35 third-period points.
The Hornets’ unheralded Lou Derloni delivered a game-high 13-carry, 145-yard rushing performance that included 27- and 45-yard scoring sprints.
“Louie Derloni is a great football player in all three facets of the game,” Brest praised. “Louie Derloni did things in the offseason to get himself ready. Louie Derloni could be playing tailback in a lot of (offensive) systems. He carries the ball well, he blocks well, he runs hard, he plays a physical linebacker, and he’s just got a great head on his shoulders.
“We trust Louie Derloni,” Brest added.
Hickory’s big-play offense also included Matt Voytik’s 8-for-17 passing performance that included a 23-yard scoring strike to Andrew Pryts, and De’quan Lewis’ 60-yard scoring sprint.
Also, within a 10-second span of the 3rd quarter, Pryts pilfered a pass, returning it 41 yards for a score, then Jordan Wombacker recovered a Farrell fumble, returning it 9 yards for another TD. Additionally, Charles Carr collected another 5-yard TD run and Nick Cannone tossed a 9-yard TD to Noah Bianco. During the 1st half Wombacker whacked 27- and 25-yard field goals.
In all Hickory harvested 425 total yards, and during its current 5-game skein the Hornets have outscored opponents 247-27.
“Teams are trying to take certain things away, but we’re startin’ to find answers all the way around. The kids are just fighting through adversity, coming together as a team, and, hopefully, we’re peaking at the right time,” Brest said.
“We cleaned some things up this week,” Brest continued, adding,
“We always talk about ... the only people, we believe, that can stop us only is ourselves. And if we continue to focus on the fundamentals, get better mentally, get better physically, get better at the little things, we’re gonna be okay.”
Farrell, facing a 47-0 deficit approximately midway through the 3rd quarter, did not quit.
Dewayne Burns burst 77 yards for a touchdown — the highlight of his team-high 8-carry, 107-yard outing — and Alex Meyers fired a 30-yard touchdown to Deanté Phillips with only 22 ticks to play.
The Steelers shut out Sharon and Kennedy Catholic to commence the campaign, but have dropped 3 of their last 5 games — 3 of which at Lou Falconi Field. In the last 2 weeks Lakeview and Hickory feasted on Farrell (4-3) for 99 points.
Standup Steelers’ skipper Jarrett Samuels said, “Lot of changes. We’ve got about ten guys who won’t be with us the rest of the way, and they didn’t play (Friday) night. They were seniors, but we’ve gotta make some changes.
“No excuses, no alibis,” Samuels insisted. “We’ve got a two-game season to go. We’ve gotta band together. ... I’m not gonna waver. I’m gonna come here Monday and get back to the grind, get ready for Conneaut Area.
“Hickory’s an awesome team, they’ve shown us that the last couple years. ... But, again, we’ve got work to do,” the resolute Samuels continued. “Yeah, we’re stingin’ right now from the last two weeks. But we’ve gotta find a way to get up off the carpet.
“It’s a two-week season. We win two games, we get in(to the District 10 Class A playoffs),” Samuels said.
Samuels said the aforementioned casulaties were the result of disciplinary decisions by him and his staff.
“Again, I’m here to do more than just coach football,” Samuels emphasized. “I know comin’ back (from a 1-year hiatus) I’m taking my lumps, but I have to think enough of these guys that I know they can be coached up.
“It’s my job to make sure — even the guys who aren’t here anymore — I still care about them, I still love them as young men. But I’ve gotta go forward and do what’s best for these (remaining) kids. That’s my mission: Do what’s best for the kids and coach ’em.”
HICKORY 0 19 35 6 60
FARRELL 0 0 6 8 14
H — Pryts, 23 pass from Voytik (kick failed)
H — Derloni, 27 run (Wombacker kick)
H — Wombacker, 27 field goal
H — Wombacker, 25 field goal
H — Derloni, 45 run (Wombacker kick)
H — Pryts, 41 interception return (Wombacker kick)
H — Wombacker, 9 fumble return (Wombacker kick)
H — Carr, 5 run (Walters kick)
F — Burns, 77 run (kick failed)
H — Lewis, 60 run (Walters kick)
H — Bianco, 9 pass from N.Cannone (kick failed)
F — Phillips, 30 pass from Meyers (Meyers run)
18 First downs 7
297 Rushing yards 116
128 Passing yards 62
18-9-0 Att-comp-int 11-5-2
425 Total yards 178
1-0 Fumbles-lost 6-3
4-50 Penalties-yards lost 11-53è
Rushing: HICKORY — Derloni 13-145, Sellers 3-63, Lewis 2-58, Carr 5-24, Voytik 5-3, Cannone 1-3, Fox 1-1; FARRELL — Burns 8-107, James Jackson 2-18, Guelledge 6-8, Gavis 4-5, Newel 2-1, John Jackson 3-(-3), Meyers 3-(-12), Team 1-(-8).
Passing: HICKORY — Voytik 17-8-0, 119; N.Cannone 1-1-0, 9; FARRELL — Meyers 7-4-2, 66; Guelledge 4-1-0, (-4).
Receiving: HICKORY — Lewis 4-47, Pryts 2-17, Derloni 1-32, Steach 1-23, Bianco 1-9; FARRELL — Newell 2-40, Phillips 1-30, Burns 1-(-4), Gavins 1-(-4).
It was somewhat difficult to comprehend, and in some regards almost painful to watch.
Hickory falls to Lions in PIAA Class AA western region final
SLIPPERY ROCK — Brett Brumbaugh brought Bill Brest back to reality.
Brest seemed, Saturday afternoon, momentarily lost in thought when a post-game question was posed. Perhaps it was because it had been 3 months since he had experienced the disappointment of defeat.
Brumbaugh-led South Fayette’s football team short-circuited a splendid season a step shy of the statewide stage for Brest and Hickory High with a 23-20 win over the Hornets in the PIAA Class AA western regional championship game.
SPORTVIEW: Browns, Steelers will both lose
THE CLEVELAND Browns quarterback position has been a revolving door this season, but at least one of the more successful signal-callers is back. Jason Campbell is recovered from a concussion and will start.
Does it really matter?
Roundup: Opening-weekend tipoff tourneys conclude
Kittanning Tipoff Championship
ä Hickory 60, Kittanning 32 — Coach Jeannette Whitehead’s Lady Hornets had an impressive weekend in winning the opening tourney of the season.
“It’s nice to get out of the game with a win,” said Whitehead. “The kids were anxious to get going.”
2013-14 hoops season begins with tipoff tourneys
Farrell Julius McCoy Tipoff Tourney
ä Kennedy Catholic 48, Imani Christian Academy 40 — The Golden Eagles set up an all local rematch with host Farrell by pulling away in the fourth quarter in a tight battle.
For KC, Gerald Zachar and Sam Crow each scored 13 points to pace the victory, Brown had 14 and Southerner 12 for Imani.
Brookfield boys win season-opener against Py Valley
It was a typical season-opener: Too many turnovers, some questionable shot selection, and careless personal fouls. But for Brookfield High boys’ bench boss Bill Kovach, “ ... always happy with a win.”
The Warriors were 7-for-10 from the free-throw line during the 4th frame, and held off Pymatuning Valley, 59-48, Tuesday night.
Hornets advance to semis with win over Central
DuBOIS, PA. — Some people could say the “third time is a charm.” For the Hickory High Hornets it was much more than that. In fact, it was glorious.
After losing in the first round of the PIAA Class AA playoffs the last two years, the Hornets finally nailed down a victory with a 37-27 triumph over the Central Dragons from Martinsburg.
Lakeview falls to Clarion Area in PIAA quarterfinals
SLIPPERY ROCK — In the scholastic athletic arena, “mercy rule” — while not politically correct in hyper-sensitive 2013 society — is a relatively accepted term.
Clarion High’s football had mercy-ruled all 13 prior opponents this season. And the Bobcats seemed bent on continuing their commanding conquests during Saturday’s PIAA Class A quarterfinal-round meeting with Lakeview.
Hickory focused on winning PIAA opener
The calendar reminds us that Thanksgiving arrives a little later than usual this year. But as holiday traditions go, this one has been pretty productive for Hickory High head football coach Bill Brest.
“My wife always has me put up our Christmas tree on the Friday after Thanksgiving ... and the next day, we’ve won. So I’ll be more than happy to help my wife put up the tree this Friday,” Brest related.
During the past 2 years Hickory has won District 10 titles on Thanksgiving weekend. But this year the Hornets harvested their 3rd consecutive crown last week, jettisoning Girard (21-10). Now Hickory (11-1) has a 1 p.m. date in DuBois Saturday against surprising Central-Martinsburg (11-2) in the PIAA Class AA quarterfinals.
Smart move by PIAA to schedule games early this weekend
Congratulations to the PIAA for making a good move that helps teams and fans of high school sports.
Wow, I haven’t been able to say that often enough!
But many of the high school football games this coming weekend will be played in the afternoon which is a real plus for traveling on possibly snow-blown highways at this time of the year.
Hornets 3-peat as D-10 champs with win vs. Girard
EDINBORO — When legendary coach Vince Lombardi said “the only good thing that comes from losing is the desire never to lose again,” he could very well have been referencing the future for Coach Bill Brest and his Hickory Hornets.
Since Hickory lost to Sharon, 14-6, in the 2010 District 10 finals in Brest’s first year at the helm of the team, the D-10 Class AA title game has belonged to Hickory. And Saturday afternoon at Edinboro University’s Sox Harrison Stadium, it was no different as the Hornets topped Girard, 21-10 for a third straight crown.
Sailors beat Devils to capture 1st District 10 title
NEW WILMINGTON — Lakeview may have a long way to go to equal Sharpsville’s success in the sport of football, but the Sailors jump-started the process Friday night.
With Blake Reddick roaring into the record book, the Sailors shut out Sharpsville, 27-0, in the District 10 Class A championship game at Greyhounds Stadium.
Hornets seek 3-peat Saturday vs. Girard
Bill Brest ... buffer?
Hickory High’s head football coach has broad shoulders and that’s necessary, because he’s taking on all distractions as his Hornets prepare for Saturday’s District 10 Class AA championship game.
Hickory (10-1) will attempt to hoist the D-10 trophy for a 3rd consecutive season when the Hornets journey to Girard’s backyard — Edinboro University’s Sox Harrison Stadium — to meet the Yellow Jackets at 1 p.m.
Hickory rolls past Northwestern in D-10 semifinals
SLIPPERY ROCK — They say that “Familiarity breeds contempt.” You can bet the Northwestern Wildcats are feeling a bit of the latter for the Hickory Hornets!
For a third straight season Hickory eliminated the northerners from the District 10 Class AA playoffs, this time by a 52-14 score in the semifinals Saturday night at Slippery Rock University’s Thompson-Mihalik Stadium.
Greenville falls to Girard in D-10 semifinals
ERIE — District 10 was destined for a Class AA championship game between reigning 2-time titlist Hickory and Greenville.
But no one informed the Girard High football team of the plans.
“ … This is pretty cool … I’m pretty fired up about it,” admitted 4th-year Yellow Jackets’ head coach Jim Funk after Girard jolted Greenville, 16-14.
SPORTVIEW: Season fate could be decided today for Browns, Steelers
IT MAKES NO sense to say that one game determines the rest of the season. That’s why I’ll simply say: Today’s one game determines the rest of the season.
Since when did my predictions make sense anyhow?
The Cleveland Browns’ visit to Cincinnati today will go a long way to deciding if the Browns have a shot at making the playoffs — and even winning the AFC North title — or if they should start planning for the NFL draft.
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- Hickory falls to Lions in PIAA Class AA western region final