Undefeated Hillsboro scrapes by Ellinwood


Caleb Hilliard lunges and brings down Ellinwood quarterback for a big loss early in the Hillsboro High School home win over the Eagles Friday night. Hilliard was a thorn, sticking nine tackles as part of a briery defensive effort that yielded just 198 yards on the night.

The Hillsboro Trojans overcame mistakes, misfires and penalties to post a 32-6 win over Ellinwood Friday night at Joel Wiens Stadium in Hillsboro.

?I?m happy for the win, but it wasn?t a game we were sharp in,? coach Max Heinrichs said as his team moved to 3-0 with its biggest margin of victory so far this season.

Heinrichs said illness was a factor, but he didn?t want to make excuses.

?We just didn?t concentrate very well tonight,? he said. ?We made a lot of mistakes that we hadn?t made to this point. It?s good to get a win after a game like we played tonight.?

The Trojans scored first on a four-yard run by Chance Reece with 4:04 left in the opening quarter. Ellinwood blocked Ethan Frantz?s point-after kick and the score stood at 6-0.

Hillsboro seemed on the way to its second score in the second period when they drove to the Eagle 9-yard line in six plays. But on a third-and-goal from the 12, quarterback Jacob Fish?s throw across the middle was intercepted near the goal line by linebacker Tanner Ragan, who returned the ball 99 yards for a touchdown.

This time Reece blocked the kick for HHS and the game was tied at 6-6 with 7:52 left in the half.

After trading possessions, the Trojans drove 86 yards in six plays?the big one a 45-yard scoring pass from Fish to Ben Beber?meyer with 1:34 left in the half.

Ellinwood nearly snuck in another score before halftime, taking advantage of two personal foul calls against HHS. With a first-and-goal at the Trojan 9-yard line, an Eagle block-in-the-back penalty pushed the ball back to the 23-yard line with 6.7 seconds left on the clock.

Quarterback Kyle Corbett threw a pass into the end zone, but the Trojans prevented the catch?but the clock still showed 0.1 seconds. This time Corbett connected with his receiver, but he was stopped at the 2-yard line as the half ended.

Hillsboro came out fired up to start the third quarter and got a huge boost from a kickoff return by Bebermeyer that gave HHS the ball at the Ellinwood 43.

Reece than rumbled 23 yards around the right end to the 20. After a two-yard gain, Reece took the ball for the third straight time and rolled into the end zone from 18 yards out.

Frantz missed the kick, but HHS had some breathing room with an 18-6 advantage with 10:59 left in the third period.

?Our kids did what I asked them to do?come out in the second half, get a good kickoff, and stick the ball in the end zone,? Heinrichs said.

?Then let?s start pinning our ears back and go on defense. They did those things.?

After Ellinwood possessed the ball for about five minutes on the game clock, the Trojans took over on downs at their own 27-yard line. Five plays later, Fish hit a wide open Daniel Kunan?taev down the middle of the field for a 63-yard score. Frantz? kick made it 25-6 with 4:04 left in the third period.

Following a rough patch of fumbles, penalties and interceptions by both teams, Hillsboro managed a final score when Matt Yoder broke out of a pack of would-be tacklers and ran for a 65-yard touchdown with about 2:50 left in the contest.

Max Bertinchamp, German exchange student, booted a perfect extra point to the delight of the Trojan student section as Hillsboro completed its 32-6 victory and Ellinwood fell to 1-2.

?They played well, and they?re a good football team,? Heinrich said of the Eagles. ?They had a big play every time in (Glenn Whitaker). He?s probably the best back we see.?

Whitaker finished with 131 yards on 23 carries, but was actually outrushed by Hillsboro?s Reece, who had a huge game with 145 yards and two touchdowns on 27 attempts.

Meanwhile, Fish struggled through the air, completing only four of 18 attempts and suffered two interceptions.

The Trojans led in total yards, 371 to 198, but also led in penalty yards, 85 to 54.

For the defense, Bebermeyer picked off two Corbett passes and Taylor Hagen and Corbin Henson each grabbed one. Yoder contributed five tackles, five assists and a fumble recovery.

Coming?The Trojans will have their hands full Friday when they host Lyons for homecoming. The Lions, 2-1 for the season, are averaging just under 40 points the last two weeks after losing to Marion, 34-7, in their opener. They are led by all-league quarterback Jake Craig.

Game time is 7 p.m. at Joel Wiens Stadium. Admission is free for all who come as USD 410 celebrates the dedication of its new facility.

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