CENTER – Saturday night saw the Elysian Fields and Hemphill Hornets combine for 124 points and 1,015 yards of offense when the Yellow Jackets defeated the Hornets 74-50 in the bi-district round of the playoffs.
The Jackets advance to the second round with an overall record of 7-4.
EF finished the night with 567 total yards, 354 of which came on the ground and 213 through the air. Ryan Wilkerson went 11-of-17 passing for 213 yards and one touchdown. He also led the ground attack with 15 carries for 179 yards and two touchdowns. Chris Smith had nine carries for 69 yards and three scores. Trell Devers had seven carries for 61 yards and one touchdown. Tony Mason had 31 yards and two touchdowns on 11 carries. Jackson Illingworth had four catches for 70 yards. Tyrese Hardeman had one catch for a 63-yard touchdown.
Hemphill finished the night with 448 total yards, rushing for 263 and passing for 185. Wesley Ross threw for 185 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Dre’Lyn Washington led the ground attack with 16 carries for 203 yards and four touchdowns and also had a 59-yard touchdown catch. Clay Butler had two catches for 30 yards and one touchdown. Logan Wilkerson had five catches for 64 yards. JaMarrious Hall had 11 catches for 34 yards and a score.
The Yellow Jackets received the ball to start the game. It took them six plays to drive 62 yards for the score. Wilkerson faked the handoff and went up the middle and outran the Hemphill defenders to find his way into the end zone for a 30-yard score. That gave Elysian Fields a 7-0 lead with 9:50 left in the first quarter.
Wilkerson connected with Illingworth for a 30-yard gain to set up a four-yard touchdown run by Smith. That spread Elysian Fields’ lead to 14-0 with 2:46 left in the first quarter.
The first play of the second quarter was a direct snap to Washington who went the distance from 40 yards out to put the Hornets on the scoreboard. JaMarrious Hall punched it in for the two-point conversion to cut the Jackets’ lead to 14-8 with 11:49 left in the first half.
Ford hauled in a long pass from Wilkerson to complete the 31-yard pass to put Jackets at Hemphill six-yard line. Smith took it in from there. The extra point was no good, leaving the Yellow Jackets with a 20-8 lead with 8:35 left remaining in the second quarter.
A 26-yard pass from Ross to Childress set up a 5-yard touchdown pass from Ross to Butler. Washington punched it in for another two-point conversion to put the Hornets within four points, 20-16 with 6:32 left in the second quarter.
It only took 20 seconds for the Jackets to respond. Wilkerson found Hardeman for a 63-yard strike. The two-point conversion failed, leaving Elysian Fields with a 26-16 lead with 6:12 left until halftime.
Elysian Fields forced Hemphill to punt. Smith was on the receiving end at the 50-yard line. He ran backwards to give himself some breathing room before moving forward and making defenders miss as
he found his way into the end zone for the punt-return touchdown, spreading his team’s lead to 32-16 with 4:06 left in the first half.
The Jackets forced and recovered a fumble deep in Hornets’ territory to set up a 20-yard touchdown run to spread his team’s lead to 38-16. Wilkerson found Kirkland for the two-point conversion to make it a 40-16 ball game with 2:39 to play in the first half.
A 62-yard kickoff return set up a 15-yard touchdown run from Washington. The Jackets’ defense kept the Hornets out of the end zone for the two-point conversion.