There was nothing pretty about it, but at the end of the day, Clover Hill did its job on senior night. In a game marred by turnovers, the Cavaliers pitched a shutout in a 16-0 victory over Huguenot on Thursday.
The teams combined for 10 fumbles and interceptions — seven in the second half — and struggled to pick up momentum because of it.
“It was a sloppy game, but at the end of the day were able to get the win,” Clover Hill coach Bryan Jennings said. “We’ve got some stuff to work on, but we ended with a win.”
Clover Hill (5-5) scored the game’s lone offensive touchdown in the first quarter. The Cavaliers forced a fumble on Huguenot’s first drive and took over near the 50-yard line. The legs of running back Christopher Houston took Clover Hill inside the red zone, and QB Iman Delarosa finished the drive by finding Jaden Johnson on the back line of the end zone for a 14-yard score. Johnson later recorded an interception on defense.
Huguenot (4-5) used a variety of looks to attack the Clover Hill defense but was unable to gain traction. The Falcons used multiple players at quarterback, with four players throwing passes on designed plays.
Jennings, formerly the head coach at Huguenot, knew what his former team was capable of and preached discipline on defense coming into the game, regardless of who was taking the snap. His defense did its job, limiting the Falcons to 126 yards in the first half, with 84 yards coming on a pair of long runs by Ernest Kelley.
“I’m familiar with Huguenot, so I knew the type of athletes they had,” Jennings said. “I knew we had to play under control no matter who they had back there.”
The Cavaliers led 6-0 at halftime and took advantage of Huguenot’s share of the turnovers to build on their lead. Kicker Jonmichael Elliott booted a 34-yard field goal to boost the lead to 9-0 midway through the third quarter.
The ensuing Huguenot drive began on its 12 after a penalty, and things got worse. On the drive’s only play, the snap from center was low and rolled into the end zone. Demari Walker attempted to fall on the ball and take the safety for Huguenot, but Clover Hill’s Dalton Collins recovered it instead.
“At that point, we were just trying to get some points any way we could because it was a sloppy game. The opportunity presented itself and we made a play,” Jennings said.
Janaz Clyburn also recorded an interception for Clover Hill, while Trey Branch and Tyla Bournes recovered fumbles.
Houston rushed for 75 yards on 32 carries in the winning effort.
For Huguenot, Vantrese Boyd and Kendall Young were among the players to recover fumbles. Kelley finished with 89 yards rushing.
Huguenot 0 0 0 0 — 0
Clover Hill 6 0 10 0 — 16
CHL—Johnson 14 pass from Delarosa (kick failed)
CHL—FG Elliott 34
CHL—Collins fumble recovery in end zone (Elliott kick)
HUG: Gayles 1-4, Kelley 3-89, Street 7-0, Walker 5-0, Ross 10-33, Crayton 3-2. CHL: Cross 7-15, Mehl 4-9, Houston 32-75, Delarosa 5-4.
HUG: Gayles 0-1-0-0, Street 2-11-2-47, Walker 1-5-0-7, Arthur 1-3-0-0. CHL: Mehl 1-1-0-21, Delarosa 3-7-0-21.
HUG: Gayles 1-7, Kelley 1-27, Walker 1-20, Ross 1-0. CHL: Ruiz 2-39, Johnson 1-14, Houston 1-0.