NORWAY — In a game that was already ugly on the field, the Hunter-Kinard-Tyler Trojans and the Calhoun Falls Blue Flashes left 3:19 on the clock after the game was stopped due to what almost turned into a melee between the two teams.
With H-K-T up 40-0 in the fourth quarter, play became increasingly chippy between the two teams with some hits occurring at the echo of the whistle. Referees stepped in on several occasions to separate opposing players and Trojans head coach Dann Holland even tried calling a time out in an effort to refocus his players and defuse the situation. This was to no avail.
Later in the quarter, after the Blue Flashes were able to drive 98 yards and gain their first score, H-K-T found itself in Calhoun Falls territory again after taking the kickoff back to the Calhoun Falls 37-yard line. A few plays later, once again there was contact to a Trojans player after a play was blown dead, but this time there was a flag thrown on the play. This would prove to be the game’s last play, leaving the final score at 40-8 in favor of the Trojans.
A shoving match ensued and soon after, both teams were in each others’ faces on the field while coaches and referees tried to regain control of the situation. The game, consequently, was called at that point.
When it came to the chippiness displayed on the field, Calhoun Falls head coach David Campbell felt it could have been avoided if officials would have held the H-K-T sideline accountable for taunting his players.
“It’s just a bad situation,” Campbell said. “I had told the officials ... I’m watching them over there taunting our players.”
When asked about the alleged taunting, Holland denied the claims were accurate. “I would disagree with that one hundred percent,” Holland said. “We talk to our players every week about that. We do our talking with our pads.”
Whatever the case may have been, it led to Campbell telling the officials that he saw no point in continuing the game. “At this point let’s just call it a football game because it’s not going to get any better,” Campbell told the officials, to which Holland agreed.
The drama that unfolded seemed to overshadow what H-K-T accomplished on the field, including a record-setting day by Trojans running back Brandon Hart. Coming into the game, Hart needed to rush for 40 yards to become the Trojans’ all-time leader in rushing yards. The record was his midway through the second quarter as he finished the game with 102 rushing yards on 14 carries. He also added a TD and 2 two-point conversions.
“It feels great. You work hard all season,” Hart said about his accomplishment.
The Trojans took a 32-0 lead into half time after a stout defense crowded the line and came up with stop after stop to shutout the Blue Flashes. The Trojans were able to get several big plays from freshman Darius Hammonds, who finished the game with 3 punt returns totaling 117 yards and a TD. He also added a TD reception.
Trojans quarterback Donnie Edwards overcame and early interception and threw for 109 yards, a TD and 3 two-point conversions. Linebacker Marion Bell paced the Trojan defense with 7 tackles and 2 sacks.
The Blue Flashes were able to get some big plays from their running back, Ray-Ray Cade, who rushed for 100 yards and a TD.
The Trojans advance to the next round to face McCormick.