MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

October 8, 2012

Not quite perfect but a complete game for Hilldale

By Kenton Brooks
Phoenix Sports Writer

— It wasn’t a perfect game for Hilldale, but it was very close to being that for the Hornets.

Coach Chad Kirkhart’s squad played well on offense, defense and special teams in the 48-6 thrashing of Lincoln Christian last Friday night.

“Everything was pretty solid,” he said after watching the video. “I’m not saying we were terrible in any area. There’s always room for improvement, but I was pleased with the way we played. I’m proud of that.”

The Hornets compiled 432 yards in total offense including 391 of that on the ground and yielded 244 yards of offense, or an average of just 4.6 yards per play. If that wasn’t enough, Hilldale jumped on the Bulldogs immediately with Seth Reheard’s 93-yard return of the opening kickoff for a touchdown.

All of this came against a team that was 4-1 and ranked No. 10 in the Associated Press Class 3A poll coming into the game.

“We thought they were a good football team,” Kirkhart said. “Offensively, they throw the ball well and can give you problems in what they do in the passing game. I thought we settled in after their first drive and played well. Did I think it would be a 48-6 game? No, I didn’t.

“I absolutely thought we could play the way we did. I thought if we could put long drives together and the clock running, we could keep their offense off the field. We wanted to get a couple of stops here and there.”

The Hilldale coach, though, found some little things that went wrong such as missed blocks and not making the right steps on the offensive line or hoping for a better rush by the defensive line in the first half.

“You might think I’m nit-picking on little things like that, but they make a big difference when you’re playing a good football team,” he said. “You always find things to work on and you always watch on film what you can do better. That’s why we watch it.”

The Hornets will be looking to correct their mistakes for this week’s District 3A-7 home game against Locust Grove. The Pirates are 4-2 overall and 1-2 in district in former Muskogee coach Matt Hennesy’s first season at the school. Locust Grove comes off a 41-20 loss to Jay last Friday.

Meanwhile, Kirkhart said he doesn’t see any glaring problems with his team right now as it brings a 5-1 overall record and 2-0 district mark into this week.

“We want to get back to the fundamentals and make sure we’re doing those things right,” he said. “We think we are. You’re never going to play perfectly. You would like to, but we want to continue to get better every week. That’s the goal.”