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Willard falls to Tigers on road in SBC Bay opener

By BOB ZOELLNER • Updated Oct 5, 2019 at 12:09 AM

HURON — It didn't take long for Huron to establish its dominance on Kalahari Field Friday night.

The Tigers, after going three-and-out on the opening drive of the game, used the final five and a half minutes of the first quarter to man-handle Willard on both sides of the ball, scoring five touchdowns in that span to leave no question about the outcome, an eventual 45-6 Sandusky Bay Conference Bay Division win over the Crimson Flashes to open up conference play.

Two passing touchdowns, a rushing score, and two interception returns for touchdowns later, and Huron took a rather comfortable 35-0 lead into the second quarter. The scoring lessened quite a bit after that point, and a running second half clock moved things along for the final two quarters.

The Tigers (5-1, 1-0) first play from scrimmage was a mishandled snap from the shotgun, resulting in a five yard loss from midfield. Two incomplete passes later, Huron had to punt the ball away. Willard then had its own three-and-out before punting, giving Huron the ball at the Willard 36 after an 11-yard Jimmy Harkelroad return.

A nine-play drive finished off by a Joey Brown to Jacob Lamb 6-yard completion at the 5:32 mark of the first quarter started the onslaught. On the ensuing Flashes possession, a batted ball at the Willard 10 was pulled down by Richie Delaney, who waltzed into the endzone for a quick score. Willard went to the air again on its first play from scrimmage after the kickoff, and this time Harkelroad came up with the pick and went 37 yards down the left side for another quick score.

Willard (0-6, 0-1) punted the next time it had the ball, and one play later Brown scrambled right under pressure, then lofted a deep ball to a wide open Cole Parker, who hauled the ball in around the Crimson Flashes 5 before taking it in for the score.

One more Willard punt gave Huron the ball one final time in the first quarter, and three plays later the Tigers covered 30 yards, the final nine on a JJ Holliday run as the quarter ended. Luke Wood, who kicked a 21-yard field goal in the third quarter, was perfect on all five of his point after tries in the quarter, giving Huron a five and a half stretch of football to remember.

"Every week now we get into a spot where when it happened right there real early in the game or right before halftime, we kind of implode," said Willard coach Kade Long. "We give up two or three quick touchdowns where it kind of sets it off, and it's hard to come back from."

Huron added a final TD on a Jacob Detlor 3-yard run in the second quarter, while Willard got into the end zone just before halftime on a Cooper Parrott to Hayden Meisner 1-yard pass completion.

Long,who has a very young team with just three seniors on the roster, is just looking for improvement at this point.

"What I can take way from this is it's going to be growing pains," Long said. "I want them to say 'I don't want this to happen again. I'm going to go to the summer lift, the summer camp, and I'm going to get better. I'm going to get my teammates there. I'm going to get our whole team together and try to push ourselves so we don't have to go through this every week.'

"So I'm just hoping they take that away and we can try to move forward and try to keep building on what we're trying to put up here."


Willard 0 6 0 0 — 6

Huron 35 7 3 0 — 45


H — Jacob Lamb 6 pass from Joey Brown (Luke Wood kick)

H — Richie Delaney 10 interception return (Wood kick)

H — Jimmy Harkelroad 37 interception return (Wood lick)

H — Cole Parker 42 pass from Brown (Wood kick)

H — JJ Holliday 9 run (Wood kick)

H — Jacob Detlor 3 run (Abe Fortune kick)

W — Hayden Meisner 1 pass from Cooper Parrott (pass failed)

H — Wood 21 field goal

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