On a slick, muddy field, the Lakewood Leopards spoiled Hobbton’s senior night with a 29-6 defeat of the Wildcats Friday night to end the regular football season.
Lakewood coach James Lewis said, “I thought Hobbton played well. Coach Hill had them ready to play. It was a hard fought game like every time we come over here. It’s always a battle and we weren’t expecting anything less.”
Hobbton’s Robert Hill wasn’t entirely displeased with his team’s performance.“That was pretty good. I thought we played well. We made a few mistakes on offense and a couple of mistakes on defense. But, Lakewood is a good team and I thought all the way around we played well. We’re getting better. I know its the end of the season but we’re getting better and I’m proud of our guys. We have 1 more week to go and we’ll see what happens,” commented the Wildcat coach.
The first half was a defensive battle with no score in the first quarter. Hobbton had first chance and ran 3 and punted.
Lakewood’s Zach Tanner was moving the ball when Josh Polk picked off an interception with 6:25 left in the first quarter. The Wildcats ran 3 and kicked again.
Lakewood took over and ran into trouble and had to punt, a short one. The Wildcats took over on the 48-yard line. Gregory Herring lost an interception to Akili Underwood. Lakewood took over. Midway the second quarter, Lakewood got down deep in Hobbton territory scoring on a 1-yard dive up the middle by Carsell Bennett. With the point after kick, the Leopards took a 7-0 lead with 6:30 left in the half.
The Wildcats took over and after a first down, they bogged down and had to punt putting Lakewood at their own 15-yard line. The fumbled with Ty Hunter recovering for the Wildcats at the Leopard 31-yard line. The Wildcats fumbled the ball back to Lakewood on 2nd down. Lakewood the fumbled the ball again with Hobbton recovering at the 35-yard line. The moved the ball down inside the 20 before being assessed a penalty. With 43 seconds left, the Wildcats attempted a field goal which was wide and short. The score at the half was 7-0, Lakewood.
The Leopards got the ball first after the break. The Wildcat defense stopped the dead in their tracks forcing a punt.
The Wildcats took over on the 39-yard line. Herring put the ball up intended for Chris Faison but William Moore grabbed and took off before being knocked out of bounds at the Wildcat 42-yard line. With 4:54 left in the third, Underwood scored again on a 10-yard run. With the point after kick, the score was 14-0.
Hobbton tried again but came up short. Lakewood took over at their 35-yard line. Tanner connected on a 30-yard pass for a score with 0.5 seconds left in the third quarter. The point after kick made it 21-0 after 3 quarters.
The Wildcats attacked again and were in a 4th and long situation when Herring connected with Chris Faison on a 25-yard pass play for the first down. With 6:11 left in the game, Steven Bell scored on a 3-yard run to make it 21-6. The point after attempt on a run came up a foot short. The score was 21-6.
The Leopards would strike again late in the game when D. J. Eason scored on a 36-yard run to make it 27-6. Tanner complete a pass for the 2-point conversion to go up 29-6.
On the kick-off, JD Faison got a 31-yard return but it was too little, too late for the Wildcats.
Bell was the Wildcat’s leading rusher with 60 yards and a touchdown. Defensively, Mason Wilson had 11 tackles, Chris Faison had 10 tackles, and Tyler Hudson had 8 tackles. Herring and JD Faison had 4 tackles each.
For Lakewood, Bennett had 106 yards on 14 carries. Underwood had 5 carries for 41 yards, Eason had 7 carries for 34 yards and Tanner had 6 carries for 30 yards. He completed 2 of 9 passes for 29 yards. Defensively Jerry Sinclair led with 8 tackles. Jody Conrad had 6 tackles Moore 4 tackles and 1 interception and Ray Hays had 4. Luke Brewer had 5 tackles and Underwood had 2 tackles and an interception.
Both teams will be playing next week in the first round of the play-offs at To Be Announced locations.