The Hamilton County High School Trojan football team defeated the top seeded team in District 1A-5 by stopping the Lafayette County Hornets Friday night, Oct. 4 in Mayo. The final score was 27-20.
With the early season games behind them, Hamilton County now has more confidence going forward. This win against Lafayette is their first district win, which puts the Trojans on a fast track to a district title.
The game Friday night was a battle as Lafayette proved the powerhouse they are. However, the Trojans answered and answer they did. The very athletic and physical ball teams were, as was evidenced, ready to play.
The Trojans took an early 7-0 lead in the first quarter with a touchdown catch by Malik Robinson. That score held going into halftime. Both defenses were effective at shutting the other team down until four minutes were left in the third quarter when a short rushing touchdown by Lafayette’s Jajuan Camacho tied the game at seven.
Hornets fans were relieved to finally get on the board, and knew then they had a force to be reckoned with from Hamilton County.
The Trojans quickly quieted the home fans by scoring on the next series to regain the lead 14-7 they would not relinquish.
It was the Trojans again scoring first in the fourth quarter to make the lead 20-7, but it was Lafayette that hit on the quick score this time to counter and bring the margin to six with 8:02 remaining, 20-14.
With the Hornets now in striking distance, no one was leaving the stadium until the time expired. Hamilton once again scored with just over three minute left to take a 27-14 advantage.
With under two minutes in the game the Hornets moved back down the field and scored a touchdown to once again close the gap to six. The ensuing kickoff was covered by the Trojans and it appeared they would claim the victory by simply running out the clock. The next play saw the ball pop loose and the Hornets recovered the fumble with 1:26 on the clock and remained alive for one more series.
With time running out, the Hornet’s coaching staff wasn’t ready for the post game handshakes and conceded nothing. A well executed hook and ladder play by the Hornets put the Hornets inside the Trojan’s 10-yard-line and first and goal. Fans on the home side of the field remembered the last minute district win last season over Jefferson County and were hoping for a repeat. This time it wasn’t meant to be as the pass into the back of the end zone with 58 seconds left was intercepted by a Trojan defender. The Trojans then were able to run the clock out and escaped with a 27-20 win.
Hamilton Head Coach Blair Armstrong could not be more thrilled for the team. “Though we weren't picked to win, we didn't let that bother us. We had a great week of practice and are still improving. We had several penalties on several of our first half drives to stop ourselves and keep the game close,” said Armstrong. “We need to get rid of the dumb penalties and protect the ball better to continue to beat good teams. Trojan Quarterback Anterfernee Smith connected on four touchdown passes to catapult him in to the top three quarterbacks in the state in Single A, according to max preps. He was 10 for 16 and 248 yards, the longest an 82-yard strike to senior Jeremiah Lee. Smith spread it around to five other receivers on the night as well. Malik Randolph led rushers with 57 yards and Jacari Washington had 38 as the team rushed for 133 yards total. This week we take no another ranked team in Dixie County. They are undefeated as well and probably ranked number 1. they are a very well balanced team and they have chosen us for homecoming. We hope to give them a good game."
The Trojans take on Dixie County Friday night, Oct. 11, in Dixie County. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m.