The Hobbton Wildcats kicked of their season on Friday as they travelled up to Goldsboro to take on the Goldsboro Cougars in non-conference football action. In a series of mistakes that likely stemmed from first game jitters and inexperience, the Wildcats got off to a slow start against a strong Goldsboro team that led to a 56-0 shut out loss.
In the first two offensive series for Hobbton, an interception and a fumble resulted in two Goldsboro scores while the Wildcats had only ran two plays up to that point.
With the first turnover, the Cougars had the first scoring opportunity. It only took minute and five seconds for them to work their way through the Wildcat defense for a score and PAT to go up 7-0.
On the next possession, the Wildcats turned the ball around but were intercepted which gave Goldsboro possession in Wildcat territory resulting in another score. The score, with 8:51 left in the first quarter was suddenly 14-0.
Later, another first down mistake gave the Cougars the ball on the Wildcat 26-yard line. In less than a minute, the Cougars tallied yet another touchdown and PAT for a 21-0 lead.
The Wildcats finally had a mistake-free possession but they could only muster up three plays before the punt team came on.
Goldsboro took over on their 20-yard line and on second down scored on a 78-yard run for a 27-0 first quarter lead as the PAT went wide left.
More disaster struck for Hobbton on the last play of the first quarter when DaCorris Morrison had the ball knocked loose resulting in a Cougar recovery at the Wildcat 32-yard line. The first quarter ended then just 28-seconds into the second quarter, the Cougars scored again to go up 34-0 with the successful PAT.
Still struggling to find any offense, the Wildcats tried again but ran only three plays before punting it back. Goldsboro took over on their 26-yard line.
The Cougars offense continued to surge as they completed a 68-yard pass for another score with 7:30 left in the half. The PAT missed but with the score now 40-0, the mercy clock was out.
Goldsboro scored twice more in the second quarter to take a powerful 54-0 lead into the halftime break.
In the second half, the mercy rule continued as the clock rarely stopped.
The Wildcats moved the ball around against Goldsboro’s younger players, however, they were just simply unable to get much yardage. To close out the scoring, Hobbton’s defense recovered a fumble at their own three-yard line. Once again, the offense was stymied as they ran just three plays before having to punt. The kick was blocked and resulted in a safety and two more points for the Cougars 56-0 win.
After the game, new Hobbton head coach Joe Salas explained that he plans to use this game as a teaching moment.
“It’s part of the process,” Salas commented. “It was a good learning experience. You either win or you learn and that tape’s going to teach us a lot on Monday,” he concluded.
The Wildcats, now 0-1 on the young season, travel to Chatham Central on Friday night in search of their first win.
Reach Sports Editor Daron Barefoot at [email protected]