Football: North Harford beats Digital Harbor to advance in playoffs

The North Harford Hawks, the Class 3A North's top-seeded football team, earned a spot in next week's region championship game with a 36-6 drubbing of visiting fourth-seeded Digital Harbor Friday night.

In next Friday's 3A North final, the Hawks will host second-seeded Aberdeen at 7 p.m.

Starting on its 22 after the opening kick, North Harford moved the ball easily, driving to the Rams' two-yard line on seven plays. The drive was capped by Eric Bayer's two-yard touchdown run. Chris King put the extra-point attempt through the uprights to give the Hawks a 7-0 advantage.

On North Harford's next possession, which began after the Rams punted the ball to the 39, the Hawks moved to Digital Harbor's 26 on six plays, but were handed a 15-yard penalty which set up a second-and-18 on the Rams' 41. Taking the ball on the drive's seventh play was Bayer, who broke two tackles, then sprinted past the Digital Harbor secondary for a 41-yard touchdown. King followed with his second extra point kick of the evening, putting the Hawks up, 14-0.

Digital Harbor scored its lone touchdown in the waning seconds of the second quarter, when the Rams' quarterback hit receiver Ian Pentz in the end zone with a 10-yard pass.

North Harford led at the half, 14-6.

Following a scoreless third quarter, the Hawks put together a 76-yard, nine-play drive that ended with a two-yard scoring run by Jon Hammer. King's point-after attempt was blocked, leaving the Hawks up 20-6.

Digital Harbor's first possession of the final quarter ended with a safety when the Hawk defense forced the Ram quarterback out of bounds in his own end zone.

Seven plays into their next drive, the Hawks found the Rams' end zone again, this time when quarterback Ryan Stinar hit a wide-open Brady Maguire with a 22-yard touchdown pass. King hit another extra-point kick to make the score, 29-6.

After recovering a Digital Harbor fumble with 7:22 left on the clock, the Hawks got their final touchdown on a nine-yard scoring run by Josh Welsh. King nailed his final point-after kick of the night to end the scoring at 36-6.

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