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Hawks grounded by Clinton

Daniel Vesco will never forget the first time he touched the football in a varsity game.

The Hardin Valley Academy junior dashed 58 yards for a touchdown and also had a 13-yard scoring run later in the second half against Clinton Friday, Sept. 11, at HVA.

“I was kind of nervous, but I knew that I had a great team in front of me,” Vesco said. “I just tried to run like a running back should and do whatever I could to get in.”

The longest scoring play for the Hawks this season helped lessen the sting of a 55-21 loss.

The Hawks (1-2, 0-1 District 3-AAA) had to regroup after falling behind 42-7 by intermission against the state’s fourth-ranked Dragons (4-0, 3-0 ).

Vesco emerged as one of the bright spots in a game that began with the HVA offensive line getting flagged for illegal procedure five times in eight plays. His contributions occurred after sophomore tailback Dorian Eskridge left the game with a high ankle sprain late in the first half.

Eskridge watched the rest of the game on crutches. He could miss at least two games. “Unfortu-nately, Dorian got hurt and I had to step up and, hopefully, I did good,” said Vesco, who also played well at outside linebacker. “I could not do anything without the guys in front of me. I thank them for doing their jobs so I can do my job.”

Ricardo Winston provided a spark with 55 yards rushing, including a 27-yarder and Ben Barnett had a nice kickoff return.

HVA quarterback Jake Bishop’s illness was typical of a flu bug that infected as many as 25 Hawks the previous 10 days, and kicker Ryan Bataille was unable to play.

Bishop tried to shrug off a 102-degree temperature earlier in the day and had a 1-yard score. He capped the drive on the second play after a 12-yard completion to Adam Schlosser.

Bishop also tossed a two-point conversion to Keith March.

Josh Krebs had a 47-yard reception and added a sack on defense.

HVA’s inaugural season could be at the crossroads Friday night, Sept. 18, at Campbell County.

This district game in Jacksboro could determine whether the Hawks have a chance for a winning record at the midway point of the season.

“Our goal is to be 3-2 after five games,” said coach Wes Jones, who challenged his team to do some soul searching in his post-game talk.

Junior lineman Trey Mitchell also suffered a leg injury.


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