East Central Hornets beat New Braunfels in tight game
New Braunfels 21
East Central 24
EAST CENTRAL -- After winning their first two games of the season, and then dropping a pair of games in recent weeks, the Hornets of East Central got back on track last Friday night with a 24-21 win over the visiting New Braunfels Unicorns.
The Hornet offense got rolling early in the first quarter and put the first points of the night on the board as junior Caid Franckowiak ran in from 7 yards out. Franckowiak then ran across the goal line for a 2-point conversion, and the Hornets held an early 8-0 lead over the Unicorns.
Things settled down from there and neither team scored again in the first quarter. Midway though the second quarter, however, Hornet quarterback Christian Jones connected with senior wide receiver Vernest Dotson for a 9-yard touchdown strike. Sophomore running back Javion Polk carried in the 2-point conversion, and East Central celebrated a 16-0 lead with 6:34 remaining in the half.
The Unicorns immediately responded to the 16-0 deficit, needing little more than one minute to score their first points of the game. The touchdown came on a 23-yard passing play from Weston King to Alex Leslie. The Unicorns went for 2 on the point-after attempt, but the Hornet defense came up with the stop, leaving the score at 18-6.
The Hornet offense promptly returned the favor, taking just more than a minute off the clock to march down the field and score the team’s third touchdown of the night on a sweet 25-yard run by junior Johnathan Jackson. Jones then connected with Wanya Ward for the 2-point play, and the Hornets led 24-6 at the break.
After nearly an entire scoreless quarter of play in the third, the Unicorns added to the board with a 22-yard touchdown pass from King to Tommy Harmer-Tran. King then connected with Brandon Bielke for the 2-point conversion, and the score stood at 24-14 with 1:50 remaining in the third quarter.
The defenses stiffened at both ends of the field, and the battle continued throughout most of the fourth quarter. With time winding down, and a 10-point lead on the board, the Hornet fans were rooting for the clock. The Unicorns scored on another passing play from King to Austin Orgeron with 11 seconds to play, and kicked the extra point to make it 24-21. The Hornets were able to cover up the ball from there, and held on for the 3-point win.
Jackson led the Hornet offense with 269 yards rushing on 25 carries. Polk added to the ground game with 68 yards on 14 carries. Ward ran once for 44 yards, and Christian Jones picked up 28 yards on six carries. Franckowiak ran six times for another 20 yards and a touchdown.
Jeremy Jones completed 1 of 9 passing attempts for 9 yards, while brother Christian completed 3 of 6 passes for 20 yards and a touchdown, but also threw a pick. Dustin Toscano caught two passes for 15 yards, Ward caught two for 14, and Dotson reeled in the one catch for 9 yards and the touchdown.
The win improves the Hornets’ record to 3-2 on the year and the team will now enjoy a bye week. The Hornets will return to action Thursday, Oct. 11, as the team travels to Corpus Christi to play the Carroll Tigers. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. at the Cabaniss Multiplex.