Fort Hill cruises to 57-6 win over Havre de Grace

Nov. 18—CUMBERLAND — No. 1 seed Fort Hill controlled the game from the start on its way to a 57-6 win over No. 8 Havre de Grace in the Maryland Class 1A quarterfinal playoff on Friday.

"I thought it was a great, well-rounded game," Fort Hill head coach Zack Alkire said. "Loved the intensity our kids brought tonight. I look forward to carrying it over next week."

After forcing a three-and-out on defense, the Sentinels (11-0) only needed two plays to find the end zone.

Deshaun Brown went deep over the middle to Carson Bender for a 53-yard touchdown to give Fort Hill a 7-0 lead.

"It was a big statement," Alkire said. "It's something that we saw on film a lot over the last couple weeks. We thought we could expose that. We were a little hesitant to do it because it was pouring down rain. But our confidence in Carson and Deshaun, the offensive line, the receivers outweighed the fact."

On the Warriors (5-7) ensuing drive, Braelyn Younger intercepted a pass on third and 14.

The Sentinels took over and Brown handed the ball to Jabril Daniels three straight plays. The third was a toss that Daniels went 14 yards for a score.

In the first quarter, Havre de Grace's quarterback Jaylin Solomon extended several plays and avoided would be sacks. He faced heavy pressure, but was able to find his receivers for back-to-back first down completions.

"We were actually too aggressive," Alkire said. "We were getting way too far up field. We were really amped up, and they took advantage of that. It actually created seams for that kid to escape the pocket."

On fourth-and-six, the Warriors went deep, but the receiver slipped to force a turnover on downs.

Havre de Grace was aggressive to start the game, taking several deep shots. The first three plays were all deep passes that fell incomplete.

Down multiple scores in the second quarter, the Warriors continued to go long, but the Sentinels shut it down.

"These guys are a lot better than what their record says," Fort Hill defensive tackle Carter Hess said. "They should only have two losses. They weren't a bad team, in the playoffs we just take it up to another level."

On the first play of the second quarter, Daniels punched it in from a yard out for his second touchdown.

Down 21-0, Havre de Grace picked up a pair of first downs. From midfield, an unnecessary roughness penalty on Fort Hill gave the Warriors a free 15 yards.

On third-and-eight, Logan Vanmeter and Cooper Silber combined for a sack.

Havre de Grace went for it on fourth down, but Jaylan Atkinson and Hess combined for a sack to force another turnover on downs.

"That was pretty awesome," Hess said. "That comes from just doing it in practice. We were saying he's gonna be in the pocket and he's gonna shift back and forth. They just got there, so props to our d-tackles."

Four plays into the Sentinels' ensuing drive, Tristan Ross scored to push the lead to 28-0.

Fort Hill continued to build its lead. On its next drive, Bender scored his second touchdown of the game from 19 yards out.

The Warriors committed back-to-back penalties on the extra point. The Sentinels then went for two and Daniels scored.

On Havre de Grace's ensuing drive, the Warriors bobbled the snap on the punt. After both teams scrambled for the ball, Bryson Metz recovered and scored from five yards out.

"It's big, he's been close a couple times," Alkire said. "We actually didn't win the rush on that play, but I guess he went unblocked. I don't know, but I'm happy for Bryson that he was able to get into the end zone."

It was his first touchdown of the season and pushed the lead to 43-0.

Hess recorded his second sack of the first half on the next drive to force another punt that was blocked and recovered by Chevy Perkins.

One play later, Ross scored to make it 50-0 at halftime.

"If we can keep running the ball, we love it," Hess said. "We don't pass unless we have to. When we do run the ball, our personnel just loves to stuff it."

The Sentinels brought in their backups to open the second half. Four plays later, Nick Willison scored on a toss.

The Sentinels emphasized getting as many players as possible involved in the run game.

Fort Hill had 13 record a rush.

"That was kind of the point," Alkire said. "We were really interested in getting lots of guys carries tonight. We have a lot of young kids that haven't played a lot this year. We were happy to spread the ball around."

On the Warriors' ensuing drive, Solomon went deep and connected with Brandell Stokes who caught a 57-yard pass to the Fort Hill eight.

Deyshawn Henderson caught a touchdown from Solomon on the next play. The holder bobbled the snap on the extra point and his throw fell incomplete.

Alkire said there's no disappointment in not getting a shutout.

"Those kids show up every day to practice too," Alkire said of his backups. "They work hard, they go up against our starters every day. We have a lot of confidence in them."

The Sentinels took over to open the fourth quarter and took 9:35 off the running clock in 10 plays.

Daniels finished with nine runs for 96 yards and two scores.

"He does what he's told, he's getting a lot better at reading his blocks," Hess said. "When he does find one, it's full tilt right up the middle."

Bender and Ross each scored twice, Bender gained 90 yards of total offense and Ross added 57 rushing yards.

"It's been great all year, it starts up front," Alkire said of the run game. "We got a monster line that's really physical and really provides holes for the running backs. They capitalize, it's not just the blocks. They gotta see the holes and they did a really good job running downhill today."

Solomon led Havre de Grace with 13 rushes for 32 yards. He went 12 of 28 passing for 170 yards, one touchdown and one interception.

Stokes caught six passes for 103 yards, leading all receivers.

The Sentinels advance to the semifinals and will host No. 4 seed Cambridge-South Dorchester with the date and time to be determined. The Vikings (10-2) defeated No. 5 SEED School 46-8 on Friday.

It will be the fourth meeting all-time between the schools, and first since 2008. Fort Hill is 2-1 overall and won the last meeting 36-28.

"I know they're gonna be athletic," Alkire said. "We haven't seen them in a few years. It's a new coaching staff since the last time we saw them. I've gone through and watched very quickly all the rest of the teams in the playoffs. They'll have some athletes, we'll watch the film tonight and come up with a game plan."

Jordan Kendall is a Sports Writer for the Cumberland Times-News. Email him with scores and story suggestions at