Hornets end famine with homecoming win
Junior running back Peyton Flowers rushed for 125 yards on 18 carries and scored three touchdowns as the Loyd Star Hornets put an end to their famine with a 33-22 homecoming victory over the Enterprise Yellow Jackets in the annual Sting Bowl Friday night in Region 7-2A football action.
Both teams were starving for a victory. The Hornets satisfied themselves and presented Homecoming Queen Marlana Smith with a victory on a cool but sloppy-wet night on William E. “Sambo” Smith Field.
Loyd Star raises their record to 2-6 overall and 1-2 in the Region 7-2A race. Enterprise (0-8, 0-3) is still searching for that elusive victory to snap a 22-game losing skid.
“The boys played hard,” said Loyd Star assistant coach Jared Britt. “We played fundamental, sound football throughout the game. We are proud to get the win, but we need to continue getting better for these last two weeks.”
In the first quarter, Loyd Star and Enterprise came out and provided a defensive bout for their football fans. Both teams battled back-and-forth until the Hornets managed to break up the scoreless game on a eight-yard run by Flowers with 5:23 remaining. Seth Farmer finished a perfect three-of-three on the extra point kick on the night for Loyd Star.
In the second quarter, both teams continued their smash mouth play. The Hornets managed to increase their lead on a seven-yard run for Flowers with 4:28 remaining.
Enterprise finally managed to break up their scoreless drought in the closing second of the first half, when junior quarterback Austin Coleman hooked up with junior tight end Layne Brown for a six-yard touchdown reception with :18 second left.
The Hornets secured a 14-6 lead over the Jackets at halftime.
In the second half, Loyd Star came out strong and overpowered Enterprise in the third quarter to increase their lead to 27-6.
Freshman running back Zacchaeius Arnold punched in the Hornets’ first scoring drive of the second half with a 17-yard sprint to paydirt with 6:43 remaining. Flowers added his final touchdown on the night with a 14-yard rumble to the endzone to end the third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, the Jackets rallied back and popped the Hornets in the mouth with a 16-6 rally.
Enterprise punched in the second score of the night as Coleman connected with Brown for the second time for a 29-yard touchdown pass with 6:42 remaining. Coleman cashed in the two-point conversion to trim Loyd Star’s lead to 27-14.
The Hornets answered the challenge with a 20-yard touchdown run by senior quarterback Seth Farmer with 4:12. Loyd Star failed on two attempts to punch in the two-point conversion.
The Jackets, refusing to go down peacefully, capped off their last scoring drive on a 17-yard touchdown run by senior tailback Jake Case. Coleman punched in his second two-point conversion attempt.
“I was very proud of the guys’ effort,” said Enterprise coach Brooks Burns. “We played from start to finish and did not give up. We just made too many costly mistakes throughout the game, and we just could not overcome them at the end.”
Offensively, Farmer helped to direct the Hornets with 10 rushes for 50 yards and completed two of four passes for 50 yards.
Arnold contributed to the ground attack with 68 yards rushing on six carries.
La’Treall Smith was the top receiver for the Hornets with one catch for 24 yards.
Senior Jackson Cole paced the Jackets’ offensive attack with 196 yards rushing on 23 carries. He also completed one of three passes for 35 yards. Cole caught two passes for 45 yards
Coleman led the aerial attack for Enterprise, completing four of seven passes for 81 yards and two touchdowns. Brown had two receptions for 35 yards
Defensively, Flowers paced the Hornets with 12 tackles. Tevin Lackland contributed six stops. Dustin Hart had five tackles. Plez Shankle-Bland recovered a fumble.
Cole was the top hitter for Enterprise with 12 tackles. Case helped with eight tackles and a fumble recovery. Colton Welch had six stops, and Brown provided seven tackles.
Loyd Star welcomes the 2A defending state champions, the Bassfield Yellowjackets, to William E. “Sambo” Smith Field next Friday. Enterprise returns home to host another Lincoln County/Region rival, the West Lincoln Bears, Friday. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.