Hough did its part to stay in contention for second in the MECKA 4A Confernce race.
The Huskies’ 35-7 win against West Charlotte on Friday was built on what has worked all season – an efficient rushing attack sprinkled with big plays on defense and special teams. As a result, Hough (6-3, 4-1) remained tied with Vance for the No. 2 seed.
“We played OK, not great,” Huskies coach Miles Aldridge said. “(West Charlotte) did the things they were trying to do to – control the ball and not turn it over, so they made us do it the hard way.”
Hough’s burden was eased because it seized upon opportunities to convert prime field position into touchdowns. The Huskies needed two plays to go on top after returning the opening kick to West Charlotte’s 24. Bishop Ford’s 13-yard dash around right end gave Hough a 7-0 lead. Corey Bell’s 38-yard interception return to the Lions’ 13 led to Ford’s 5-yard run in the second quarter and a 14-7 advantage.
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“Giving the short field is always tough,” said West Charlotte director of football operations Drew Hackett, who subbed for coach Mo Collins, who was out with an undisclosed medical issue. “We made some mental mistakes and some coaching mistakes.”
Ford led Hough’s offense with 106 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 13 carries, and Van Smith was effective in short-yardage situations, with half of his four rushing attempts resulting in 3- and 1-yard touchdowns.
“Sometimes you start off quick like that it almost deflates you a little bit, it’s so easy,” Aldridge said. “We played hard and grinded it out.”
West Charlotte (4-5, 2-3) found some success on the ground with Dirk Cureton accounting for 100 of his 142 yards in the first half, but Hough countered with Ford’s 92 yards on eight attempts in taking a 21-7 lead into halftime.
The Huskies had 99 yards of offense compared with West Charlotte’s 173 in the first half, but Hough more than compensated by turning in field-shortening plays on defense and special teams that led to quick drives. The Huskies made two interceptions that put them in scoring position as well as a 42-yard punt return by Bell that led to a touchdown.