Nov. 3—HATTON — The Hatton Hornets met the Class 3A Geraldine Bulldogs at home on Thursday and lost 63-6.
The pair had never met before but walked into the game with similar records. Class 2A Hatton stood at 7-2 while Geraldine was 8-1.
"We knew coming in, with who they've played and what they've been able to accomplish, that this is one of the best football teams in 3A," Hatton head coach Denton Bowling said. "And they came out and handed one to us tonight."
As the game started, the Hornets couldn't get the ball in the hands of the quarterback. Missed and fumbled snaps led to two consecutive turnovers and 10 plays that ended in lost yards before first half ended.
Geraldine capitalized on those mistakes to score on their every drive of the half.
Both Bulldog drives that followed Hatton's missed snaps lasted one play and eight seconds. The first was a 20-yard touchdown rush from Geraldine quarterback Jaxon Colvin, and the second was a 34-yard touchdown rush from running back Carlos Mann.
Before the half was over, Geraldine scored four more unanswered TDs. Mann scored on a 5-yard rush and a 14-yard touchdown reception from Colvin, Colvin scored on a 4-yard keeper, and running back Joseph Garcia scored on a 7-yard run.
The Bulldogs went into halftime up 42-0, but the score wasn't the only bad news for Hatton. Hatton receiver Zairyon Long had to be helped off the field with an ankle injury late in the first half.
"We keep getting plagued by these injuries. Every game since week 5, we've lost one," Bowling said. "We say next man up, but right now we're running out of men."
Mann scored on a 5-yard pass from quarterback Jon Wade to open the second half for Geraldine. Garcia then had a 25-yard touchdown rush to put Geraldine up 56-0 before the end of the third quarter.
Hatton finally got on the scoreboard when quarterback Tasean Love delivered a 14-yard touchdown pass to receiver Kenyon Suggs to make the score 56-6.
The Bulldogs scored one more time when Wade ran in a 7-yard rush to finish off the Hornets 63-6 late in the fourth.
"These kids have played their tails off all season: back-to-back seven-win seasons for the first time in 20 years," Bowling said. "But none of that matters now because what matters is Sulligent."
After this loss, the Hornets finish the season 7-3 and will travel to Class 2A No. 6 Sulligent for the first round of the playoffs next Thursday.
"We're going to turn around and see what we can do to put our kids in a position to play at a high level," Bowling said. "Hopefully we'll be the best version of ourselves next Thursday night."