Messenger file photo by Chris McCarthy
Courtesy of al.com
Ashville has suffered through 14 straight losing seasons and Vincent hasn’t had a winning season since 2013, but both coaches found reasons to be optimistic about the future of their teams after Ashville earned 41-14 victory last Friday (Nov. 1) at Vincent.
Class 4A Ashville (2-8) broke away from a 21-14 halftime lead with a dominant second half against the Class 2A Yellow Jackets (2-8). Junior Luke Harris scored on runs of 1 and 12 yards to complete short scoring drives, while senior Hunter Hirsch added a 25-yard touchdown run on his first carry of the season.
“We were able to run the football tonight, and it’s been tough sledding for us trying to do that this year,” said Ashville head coach Barry Simmons. “Once we got up, we felt we could control the clock and get some guys some touches who haven’t gotten them this year.”
Luke Harris who ran for 89 yards on 10 carries, while Dylan Harris (pictured above) was 9-for-16 in passing for 114 yards, all in the first half.
With the game tied at 14, Vincent drove from its 35 to a first-and-goal at the Bulldog 1 in the second quarter, but Ashville’s Adriane Hernandez forced Vincent’s Ryan Culliver out of bounds a half yard short of the pylon. Two high snaps from center followed, and Cam Tillman blocked TyQun Goodman’s 42-yard field goal. Luke Harris broke a 41-yard touchdown run six plays later for a 21-14 Ashville lead.
Ashville’s Nathan Phillips had three catches for 78 yards, including a diving 24-yard reception on third-and-9 to set up Luke Harris’ 41-yard TD run.
Hernandez ran for a 51-yard TD run on the Bulldogs’ first play from scrimmage to tie the game at 7-7. Phillips added a 21-yard touchdown run to tie the game at 14-14 in the second quarter.
Ashville out-gained Vincent by a 364-207 margin.
“I’m proud of our effort,” said Simmons. “This is something to build on going into the offseason.”