This year’s season opener in the unusual age of COVID-19 ended the same as the previous 11 years for the Hilldale Hornets — a victory.
Hilldale used both offense and defense to score and they scored at will in the first half, jumping out to a 48-0 lead en route to a 54-0 win over the Tulsa Rogers Ropers.
“I thought we played physical but not smart. We weren’t 100 percent using our brain all the time but I liked how physical our kids were,” said Hilldale head coach David Blevins. It was the defense for the Hornets that got the scoring started. After Hilldale’s first offensive possession ended with a fumble, the Ropers started their drive at their own 17-yard line. On the drive’s second play, Brayson Lawson stepped in front of a Macuric Demry pass and rumbled 40 yards with the interception to put the Hornets up 7-0.
The play of the defense put a smile on Blevins’ face.
“You gotta love a goose egg, and with their athletes it makes me proud of the way our defense played,” he said.
The Hornet offense then went on to put six consecutive scoring drives together.
Hilldale’s first touchdown drive lasted one play. Johnnie Durossette dropped back and found Logan Harper wide open behind the defense for an easy 49-yard throw and catch. Durossette would later find Colby Thompson for a 45-yard toss for a touchdown, used his feet for a three-yard score and added an 11-yard run for a touchdown in the second quarter.
“Johnnie had two great pulls. I mean we put him in a bad situation and he made it a good play and ran it for a touchdown,” said Blevins.
Durossette finished the night with three completions on as many attempts for 88 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 46 yards on four carries and two touchdowns
“Well, I was satisfied with what I did but I know I can always play better. We have to keep working and doing the little things right,” said Durossette. “I thought the line played really good, blocked good for our backs. We just have to keep getting better.”
The Hornet ground game was led by Eric Virgil, who tallied 117 yards rushing and two touchdowns. Virgil scored on a run of 13 yards in the second quarter and his six-yard scamper in the third quarter finished the Hilldale scoring.
“Eric (Virgil) has a chance to be a really good player,” Blevins said. “He’s only a sophomore and we have a stable of good running backs but it all starts up front. I thought our offensive line handled up front better than we have in the past.”
Jaden McWilliams found the end zone on a 20-yard scamper during Hilldale’s fourth possession.
Hilldale will get a better test of their offense and defense next week when they host Checotah on Friday night.
HILLDALE 54, ROGERS 0
Tulsa Rogers 0 0 0 0—0
Hilldale 28 20 6 0—54
Hilldale-Brayson Lawson 40 yard Interception (Jaxson Whittiker kick) 10:31
Hilldale-Logan Harper 49 pass from Johnnie Durossette(Whittiker kick) 8:23
Hilldale-Jaden McWilliams 20 run(Whittiker kick) 4:42
Hilldale-Durossette 3 run (Whittker kick) 1:28
Hilldale-Eric Virgil 13 run (Whittiker kick) 8:05
Hilldale-Durossette 11 run (Whittiker kick) 3:20
Hilldale-Colby Thompson 45 pass from Durossette(xtra point fail) :47
Hilldale-Virgil 6 run (kick fail) 4:35
First Downs 20 4
Rushes-yards 38-301 26-14
Passing yards 88 105
Passes C-A-I 3-3-0 7-12-1
Punts-Avg 0-0 6-33
Fumbles-lost 3-2 2-1
Penalties-yards 6-55 11-115
Rushing: Hilldale, Eric Virgil 15-117(2 TD), J Durossette 4-46 (2 TD); Rogers, Raterrius King 5-18
Passing: Hilldale, Durossette 3-3-0 88 (2 TD); Rogers, Macuric Demry 7-12-1 105
Receiving: Hilldale Logan Harper 1-49 (TD), Colby Thompson 1-45.