After finishing second in the Baltimore County 2A Region during the regular season, Hereford began its postseason with a 57-22 opening-round victory over Patterson in the 2A North Region playoffs.
Slotback Connor Dunay led Hereford with four touchdowns runs, including three of more than 20 yards. His scored on carries of 1, 21, and 38 yards and topped it off with a 50-yard score in the fourth quarter.
“We were bringing the fullback up the middle and they were blitzing all over the place,” Dunay said. “When they were blitzing, what we did was — I just got the ball, waited for the holes to open, the line was making it happen and I was gone. I hit the holes and I read them.”
The Bulls’ triple-option attack produced three other touchdowns. Quarterback Gavin Walter had two, with slotback Sebastian Wiggins adding a late score. The flex-bone formation proved to be difficult to stop for Patterson.
“With me calling the defense, the hardest thing to stop would be the triple-option because they’ve got three options,” Hereford coach Ric Evans said. “You stop their fullback, you think you’re strong and the quarterback pulls it — now he still has a pitch option. So, it’s a tough offense to stop.
“In the city, they do so many four-wide [receiver] sets that when you come in and have to watch running backs and halfbacks and quarterbacks running the ball, it’s a much different concept on defense.”
Hereford set the tone early on defense and special teams with a blocked punt on Patterson’s opening drive and a fumble recovery on the Clippers’ second. Each offensive possession put Hereford inside Patterson territory and led to a rushing touchdown by Dunay to put the Bulls up 14-0 in the first quarter.
In the second quarter, Patterson quarterback Corey Coleman Jr. ran for a 24-yard touchdown and the Clippers converted the 2-point conversion on a running back pass to cut Hereford’s lead to 14-8. However, the Bulls went on parade with a 11-yard touchdown rush by Walter to extend their lead to 22-8 at the half.
Walter scored his second touchdown and Dunay scored his third on rushing plays. Hereford squeezed in a defensive touchdown on a 36-yard fumble recovery by linebacker Kenai Miller. Patterson’s Mark Arnold also scored.
In the fourth quarter, Patterson struck back with a 56-yard touchdown pass from Arnold to Timothy Veal. Less than two minutes later, Dunay scored his fourth touchdown of the night. Wiggins put the icing on the cake for Hereford with a 20-yard touchdown run with less than three minutes remaining.
Hereford will take on New Town in the second round of the 2A North Region playoffs. It’s will be Hereford’s second matchup against New Town after losing in the regular season.
“We played New Town in the beginning of the season and we didn’t have a great game,” Dunay said. “We’re definitely going to come to play. Our offense keeps getting better every week, our defense is getting better every week also. So, we’re just going to keep on bringing it and we definitely have some revenge for New Town coming.”