The Hobbton Wildcats finally got back into action on Monday evening after a long disruption in scheduling following Hurricane Florence. Their opponent: the Smithfield-Selma Spartans. After a hard fought defensive battle, the Wildcats came out on top with the 23-6 win.
“The defense made all the difference,” commented Hobbton coach Joe Salas. “They practiced like a million bucks all week. They came out here and worked. That is a dangerous offense that Smithfield-Selma runs. That triple option is tough, but our defense came out here and shut it down. Oh my goodness, the licks they were laying tonight were outrageous. Grey Rogers, that kid is a warrior. I can’t say enough about that guy. We are super excited. We have two W’s in a row.”
The Wildcats had the first chance, but got off to a slow start as they gave up the ball on a three and out. Smithfield took over but lost a fumble on first down at the Wildcat 39-yard line. With 3:02 left in the first quarter, Greyson Rogers got his first touchdown on an 8-yard scamper. He then scored 2-point try afterward to put the Wildcats up 8-0.
Smithfield turned the ball around again but once more gave up the ball away on downs with 1:40 left in the first quarter.
The Wildcats got on the board again when Rogers bulled his way in from four yards out. The Wildcats again scored the 2-point conversion on a run for the 16-0 Wildcats lead.
Later, the Spartans defense stiffened and backed the Wildcats into a hole deep in their own territory. Thereafter, the Spartans blocked a punt attempt and recovered in the end zone for their only touchdown of the game. The PAT was stopped, leaving the halftime score at 16-6.
In the second half, Smithfield-Selma got the first chance after the break, but fumbled the ball with Daniel Britt recovering at the Wildcats 35-yard line. Rogers and company marched the ball downfield, capping the drive off and scoring on a 30-yard pass play from Rogers to DaCorris Morrison. Jovanna Zapata kicked the PAT for a 23-6 lead with 8:46 left in the third.
Hobbton was threatening again late in the game, but Rogers was intercepted in the end zone, ending the opportunity. The Wildcats’ defense then stopped the Spartans again and took possession with 2:17 left in the game. Hobbton was running out the clock, but lost a fumble with just six seconds left in the game. The last attempt from Smithfield-Selma was stopped behind the line of scrimmage to end the game.
For Hobbton, Rogers had 146 rushing yards on 21 attempts. He also completed 13 of 19 passes for 84 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
With the win, Hobbton is now 3-2 on the season — the first time in three years the Wildcats are above .500 — while Smithfield-Selma is winless. The Wildcats will return to action on Friday when they host Rosewood.
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