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Thunderous start
Hawks avenge playoff loss to Bearden, blister BHS 32-0 after 2-hour delay

Hardin Valley Academy’s football team got a little revenge Friday night.

The Hawks picked up a win that was more than six months in the making when they shut out Bearden 32-0 in the 2011 season opener for both schools at HVA, Aug. 19.

Hardin Valley’s victory avenged last season’s 42-7 first-round Class 6A Playoff loss to the Bulldogs.

“We’re on top of the world right now,” said Hawks running back Jacob Weaver, who scored three touchdowns. “For six months we’ve had 42-7 set in our minds.

“Every gasser and every 110 that we ran was to get back and get ready for Bearden.”

Mother Nature made the Hawks wait a little longer as the game was delayed nearly two hours after Hardin Valley kicked off and BHS ran one play for scrimmage.

“It was disappointing that we had to wait,” Hawks quarterback Tim Vara said. “But I’m happy that we came out and we executed.”

And execute they did.

Hardin Valley’s defense wasted little time making the play that would set the tone for the entire contest. Bearden, on its third play from scrimmage, fumbled on its own 6-yard line and Hardin Valley senior defensive end Lee Warren recovered.

“Somebody just made a big hit and I fell on it,” Warren said.

The Hawks would score the game’s first touchdown three plays later on a 1-yard plunge by Weaver. Michael Peryo added the extra point to give the home team an early 7-0 lead.

Peryo later made a touchdown-saving tackle on a Josh Haney kickoff return to the Hawks 25.

The Hawks extended their advantage to 13-0 early in the second stanza. Dorian Eskridge scored on a 3-yard run early in the second quarter, culminating a six-play 50-yard drive.

Eskridge, Hawks senior running back, made it 19-0 at halftime on a 3-yard scoring plunge, capping a 70-yard, six-play drive. Vara opened HVA’s final scoring drive of the half with a 19-yard scamper.

In the opening half, Hardin Valley amassed 145 yards of total offense without throwing a pass.

Vara would throw only two passes all night. His lone completion was an 8-yard strike to Weaver that set up Weaver’s second TD.


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