By LENZY KREHBIEL-BURTON
KIEFER — Five minutes, 12 seconds.
That’s all the Class A No. 3 Kiefer Trojans needed to establish a lead, cruising to a 43-6 homecoming victory Friday night over the Class 2A Hulbert Riders (0-3).
Facing a fourth-and-17 on their first series, Kiefer senior quarterback Justin Rovang hit junior receive Trysten Edwards with a 33-yard touchdown pass. Edwards then ran in the two-point conversion attempt himself on a fake point-after attempt.
The Trojans never looked back, piling on 35 more points before halftime before benching their starters in the third quarter. The Creek County school only punted twice all night.
“They’re a very good football team,” Hulbert coach Gary Riley said. “Right now, we’ve just got too many guys out there who’ve never played a game before. We had five guys on the defensive side who got their first varsity experience tonight.”
Even with the Trojans’ second string on the field, Hulbert’s offense simply could not get going.
With senior starting quarterback Brandon Thompson out with a knee injury until the Riders’ Oct. 4 home opener against Wyandotte, junior back-up Johnathan Hamby struggled under center, going 0-for-8 with an interception. His only completion of the night did not count thanks to a penalty, leaving the Riders with zero receiving yards on the night and a total of 117 yards of offense.
“We have to be able to throw the ball and right now, we can’t,” Riley said. “If we can’t throw, then we can’t get out of the box, then we can’t run.”
Hulbert’s lone touchdown came in the third quarter when junior lineman Dakota Hooks recovered a live ball at the Kiefer 35-yard line and ran in for the score.
The Riders’ defense also had two interceptions on the night and forced the Trojans into committing 12 penalties, including two that caused touchdowns to be waived off.
Kiefer looks to defend its three consecutive district titles when it travels to District A-7 rival Porter (1-2). The Riders continue their extended road trip, as they open District 2A-8 play at Colcord (2-1), a 24-19 loser at Sallisaw Central Friday night.
“Our district is so tough that we’re just going to have to keep getting better at what we’re trying to do,” Riley said. “There’s not a team in our district that isn’t competitive. Just going to have to line up and try to get better."
Kiefer 43, Hulbert 6
HULBERT 0 0 6 0 6
KIEFER 22 21 0 0 43
Kiefer – Trysten Edwards 31-yard reception (Justin Rovang 2-point conversion)
Kiefer – Anthony Harwell 4-yard reception (Harwell kick)
Kiefer -- Blake Sneed 43-yard run (Harwell kick)
Kiefer – Harwell 12-yard reception (Harwell kick)
Kiefer – Trey Sneed 43-yard run (Harwell kick)
Kiefer – Trey Sneed 50-yard run (Harwell kick)
Hulbert – Dakota Hooks 35-yard fumble recovery (Caden Ellis kick failed)
Team stats Hulbert Kiefer
First downs 6 12
Rush yards 117 246
Pass comp-att 0-8 8-14
Pass yards 0 121
Interceptions 1 2
Fumbles-Lost 5-1 3-2
Punts-avg 8-24.75 2-45
Penalties-yds 6-20 12-70
Hulbert – Levi Carson 9-27, Johnathan Hamby 9-30, Anthony Howard 3-20, Alberto Landaverde 1-13, Bryson McGowan 8-25, Justin Owens 1-2
Kiefer – Gavin Hudson 8-45, Ethan Roche 4-12, Caleb Rovang 8-24, Blake Sneed 4-25, Trey Sneed 10-140
Hulbert – Johnathan Hamby: 0-8-1, 0
Kiefer – Justin Rovang 5-6, 72; Hudson 4-7-2 48
Hulbert – none
Kiefer – Trystan Edwards, 2-32, Anthony Harwell 2-18, Colton Kiehl 1-37, Ethan Roche 1-8, Marcus Shadowens 2-35, Trey Sneed 1-22