High school football returned in Harford County and beyond Friday night, with six of the 11 Harford teams in action earning season-opening wins.
Havre de Grace, Fallston, North Harford, C. Milton Wright, Harford Tech and Joppatowne picked up wins, while Aberdeen, Edgewood, Patterson Mill, Bel Air and John Carroll started with a loss.
Havre de Grace blanks Bel Air, 26-0
The Havre de Grace defense scored one touchdown and set up two other scores in a 26-0 win over visiting Bel Air.
“This time of year, typically, I always feel, defenses are a little bit ahead of offenses anyway,” Warriors coach Brian Eberhardt said. ”Our defense definitely helped us tonight as far as setting us up offensively in really good field position.”
After a scoreless first quarter, Warriors defensive back Amir Austin picked off a Bel Air pass and returned the ball 60 yards to set the offense up at the Bobcats’ 28.
The Warriors wasted little time with the great field position as senior quarterback Chase Hunt threw a 13-yard strike to junior Christian Baldwin on the third play of the drive to open the scoring with 7:16 left in the first half.
The Warriors faked the extra-point attempt and Hunt passed to Carson Holloway for 2 points and an 8-0 lead.
The Warriors were looking for more in the third quarter, but Hunt’s pass near the goal line was tipped and intercepted by Bel Air junior Tre Dennis at the Bobcats’ 3.
Bel Air picked up one first down before punting the ball back to Havre de Grace, which took over at its own 48.
The Warriors needed 11 plays before Hunt (10-for-15, 117 yards) threw his second touchdown pass of the night, a 9-yard completion to Jarred Meehan with 8:37 left in the fourth quarter.
“We have a great team, guys I’ve played with my whole life,” Hunt said. “We just wanted to come out here and really just make our town happy, have them behind us and come out here and get a win in front of them.”
That score was the first of three Havre de Grace touchdowns in 3:30.
On the ensuing Bobcats possession, Bel Air quarterback Ashton Grewe saw the snap sail over his head at midfield. The loose ball was eventually recovered by Holloway at the Bel Air 26.
Three snaps later, Havre de Grace senior running back Max James raced 18 yards into the end zone. Another missed extra-point attempt gave the Warriors a 20-0 lead.
A mere 1:14 later, Havre de Grace put the finishing touch on the victory. Junior Dominic Hyman intercepted a Grewe pass and raced untouched down the sideline for a 35-yard touchdown.
Bel Air appeared to avoid the shutout when Nate Furrow ran 54 yards for a touchdown in the final minutes, but a holding call wiped out the run, summing up the Bobcats’ night.
“Two steps forward, one step back, it felt like the entire night,” Bel Air coach Eric Siegel said. “Now, once again, every, every congrats to Havre de Grace, heck of a football team, very well coached. The beat us, we didn’t beat ourselves, but we didn’t help ourselves. Any momentum that we had offensively, [we] hurt ourselves with [a] penalty.”
Hunt completed nine of 21 passes for 118 yards with two interceptions.
Dixon leads Fallston over Winters Mill, 44-24
Fallston quarterback Aiden Dixon threw for 200 yards and two touchdowns in a 44-24 win over visiting Winters Mill.
Dixon also rushed for 105 yards and a score.
The Cougars were down 17-7 at halftime before exploding in the second half. The Cougars scored on the ground, through the air, on a punt return and on a pick-six.
North Harford tops Perryville, 14-6
North Harford also opened with home win, knocking off Perryville, 14-6.
Perryville opened the scoring in the second half with a 56-yard touchdown pass from Jayden Griffin to Zach Clarke.
The Hawks responded with two straight touchdowns, one in each of the final two quarters, to pull out the win.
Josh Garrett hit Wyatt Ralph for a 5-yard pass for both scores. Garrett added a 2-point run after the first touchdown.
Joppatowne opened with a 34-12 win at Loch Raven, while CMW won at North East, 14-6. Harford Tech defeated visiting Sparrows Point, 35-7.
Edgewood lost at Gilman, 39-18. The Rams were up 18-10 at halftime, but lost their quarterback, and coach Keith Rawlings said “the wheels fell off.”
Aberdeen also lost on the road, falling 44-30 at Frederick, while Patterson Mill was beaten by visiting Largo, 43-15.
In a Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association B Conference game, John Carroll (0-2) lost at Boys’ Latin, 17-3.