The Hillsboro football team poked undefeated Hesston in the eye by scoring the first touchdown in their district matchup, but the mighty Swathers scored at a ferocious pace from that point on to claim a 56-14 win Friday at Hesston.
After the Trojans started the game with a three-and-out, Hillsboro?s Justus Hilliard intercepted a Grant Raleigh pass on the second play of the Swathers? first possession.
The Trojans then drove from their own 39-yard line to Hesston?s 28 in five plays and a pass-interference penalty. From there, quarterback Hilliard ran off tackle the remaining distance for the score at the 8:13 mark. Jeff Jorgenson?s kick made it 7-0.
Hesston responded with intensity, scoring five times in the first quarter?including three touchdowns over a span of 2 minutes?for a 35-7 lead. By halftime the margin grew to 49-7.
At the center of the storm was Raleigh, who ran for three touchdowns and threw for three more in the first half.
The entire second half was played with a running clock. Even so, Hesston scored on its first possession to push the margin to 56-7.
With the Swather JV taking over from there, Hills?boro scored the final points of the game on a 55-yard drive?including a 41-yard run to the Hesston 10-yard line by Hilliard. One incomplete pass later, Hilliard swept the left end for the touchdown.
?We didn?t have a great first possession (on offense), but we had a good first possession on defense,? coach Lance Sawyer said of his team?s start. ?The offense went pretty well after (Hilliard?s interception), but then we just went stagnant.?
Indicative of the score, Hesston rolled up a 449 to 134 advantage in total yards, including a 342-101 edge on the ground.
?Our defense played well, but our offense put us in terrible position,? Sawyer said. ?Once we scored, we didn?t get past the 50 (yard line) again until the second half.?
Down by six touchdowns at halftime, Sawyer?s team did not roll over.
?We talked about showing some character and showing some pride,? he said. ?I thought they came out and played better in the second half. We?ve got a lot of good kids on this team. They?re going to keep fighting.?
The loss dropped the Trojans to 2-5 for the year and 0-1 in district play while Hesston improved to 7-0.
Coming?Hillsboro will face another challenge Fri?day when it hosts Southeast of Saline in the second round of district play. The purple-clad Trojans (6-1) gave Council Grove its second loss of the season by a 55-14 margin.