HANCEVILLE – The Hanceville Bulldogs hosted the Broncos of Holly Pond Friday night at Ray Talley Stadium for a critical matchup in Region 6 of Class 3A. Both teams leaned on the running game in a physical matchup that favored Holly Pond, who came away with a 40-20 win.
The ground game for Holly Pond was effective for the entire contest thanks in large part to a stellar performance from junior running back Jeremiah Holmes. Holmes put up 217 yards and four touchdowns on 20 carries. Three of those touchdowns came in the first half, including a 61-yard touchdown run on the first play of the game.
Holly Pond's front seven on defense also stood out, generating eight negative plays and holding the Bulldogs to just 115 yards of offense in the first half, 81 of which came on a single play.
Sophomore quarterback Kyler Chaney and junior running back Brody Rowell contributed in the running game, with 52- and 55-yard performances respectively. Each of them finished with a touchdown as well. As a unit, the Broncos ran the ball for 343 yards, controlling the clock and the line of scrimmage throughout the game. The Broncos won the game despite not completing a single pass.
The Bulldogs were unable to move the ball consistently on offense despite an impressive performance from junior running back Romael Simmons. Simmons ran for 189 yards and two long touchdown runs of 81 yards and 56 yards. He accounted for two-thirds of the Bulldogs' total offense.
Hanceville made a push late in the game with one of Simmons' touchdown runs and an 11-yard touchdown pass from freshman quarterback Bo Joles to senior wide out Brendan Flanigan after recovering a fumbled snap, but the Bulldogs couldn't get closer than two possessions behind the Broncos.
Holly Pond senior running back Dustin Stancill put the game out of reach on a 15-yard touchdown run with less than two minutes to play.
The win puts Holly Pond at 5-2 on the year and 2-2 in region play. The Broncos will look to keep their rushing attack going next week when they host Fultondale. The loss at home drops the Bulldogs to 1-7 this season, 0-5 in region play. The Bulldogs will try to finish their season on a high note starting with a road trip next week to Locust Fork.
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