Warhorses gallop past Hawks, 42-0
The large crowd at W.W.Carter Field Friday night was surprisingly quiet as the final seconds ticked away in the first half of the game between class 2A No. 2-ranked Barnwell High and Blackville-Hilda High.
It wasn’t that the Warhorse faithful weren’t pleased. They were just taken back by what they saw during the first 24 minutes - a commanding 42-0 lead.
For Barnwell High, that was all the scoring needed on the night as they claimed their 11th straight victory over their in-county rivals.
Unfortunately for Blackville-Hilda High, turnovers, mistakes and penalties quickly turned the rivalry game into an easy rout.
The Warhorses dominated from the opening kickoff, scoring on all four offensive possessions in the first half and added two more scores by the defense.
With the win, Barnwell High improves to 2-0 in the standings.
Barnwell High coach Dwayne Garrick said it was a good outing for the team.
“I thought we played well on both sides of the ball in the first half. We were able to get into the wishbone and drive the ball down the field several times for scores,” Garrick said. “After we got out to a big lead, we were able to give some of the younger players some playing time in the second half.”
It was all Warhorses from the opening kickoffs. The Warhorses got the ball first and drove 81 yards in 13 plays for a score.
Mikal Lee, who was the workhorse on the drive with 34 yards rushing, capped the nearly eight-minute march with a five-yard run. Hunter Webb kicked the extra point.
On the ensuing possession, the Hawks tried to answer, but their attempt had disastrous results.
After gaining two yards on first down, the Hawks tried to pass on second down. On the play, Markeith Corley of the Warhorses intercepted the pass and returned it 26 yards for a touchdown. Webb kicked the point after.
Trailing 14-0, the Hawks looked to get their offense in gear. The team seemingly found some rhythm after John Williams ripped off a 10-yard run on third and nine. From there, the drive went nowhere.
A Warhorse defensive unit fueled by Jackson Carter, Reggie Roberts, Deshawn Watson, Julius Arnold and Ryan Harper grounded the Hawks to just two yards on the next three plays to force a punt.
Nursing a two touchdown lead, the Warhorses continued to dominate early in the second quarter. Lee completed a seven-play, 64-yard drive with an eight-yard run. Webb added the kick to extend the lead to 21-0 with 9:43 left in the first half.
Down by three touchdowns, the Hawks’ offense continued to bog down. A first down run by John Williams netted just one yard. On second down, a four-yard gain by Derek Faust was called back due to a holding penalty. The team then tried to throw on second and third downs, but on both occasions the passes fell incomplete.
After another Hawks’ punt, the Warhorse offense was on the move again. This time, the team traveled 51 yards for another score.
Lee found the endzone for the third time in the first half, scoring on a five-yard run. The point after made the score 28-0.
Things continued on a downward spiral on the Hawks’ next offensive possession. The team tried to throw on first down but the pass was intercepted by Deshawn Watson of the Warhorses who returned it 30 yards for a touchdown.
Moments later, the lead ballooned to 42-0 when Brandon Harvey scored from one yard out with 49 second left in the first half.
“It was a well-played first half for our football team,” Garrick said.
For the game, Reggie Roberts led the Warhorse defense with nine tackles. Players finishing with five stops includes Jackson Carter, Earnest Smith, Cole Kearse and Dallyon Creech.
Offensively, the Warhorses rolled up 289 yards of offense. Lee led the way with 86 yards rushing. Harvey added 81 yards. Lionel Mason rushed 10 times for 63 yards.