By Phil Gibson
Friday night’s game between Hewitt-Trussville High School and Gardendale High School ended the Huskies’ chances of making postseason play. The game, in Gardendale, was competitive for much of the first half before the Rockets ran away with the game in the second half to a convincing 43-21 win over the Huskies.
The game started with the Huskies and Rockets trading touchdowns on their first two drives before Gardendale senior running back Jordan Howard broke off a 72-yard touchdown run to put the Rockets up 14-7. Howard added another rushing touchdown later in the half, but a late 1-yard dive by Hewitt-Trussville senior running back Dakota Harwell made the score 20-14 at halftime.
Things got out of hand quickly in the second half. On their first offensive play of the third quarter, Howard ran 81 yards for his third touchdown of the game to go over 200 yards rushing. On the next Huskies’ possession, an interception went all the way back for a touchdown. Later in the third quarter, a third Rockets touchdown put the game out of reach.
“We gave up some big runs to Howard,” said Hal Riddle, Hewitt-Trussville’s head coach. “We fought back, but we just couldn’t hold him down. When you can’t keep them from scoring and you’re not running up and down the field, it makes for a long night.”
The Huskies would have needed to win both tonight’s game and their matchup against Huffman High School next week to make it to the playoffs. Instead, they are looking at the prospect of their first losing season since 2003
. They will need to beat the Vikings next week and Gadsden City High School in two weeks in order to finish the season 5-5.
“They lost a game tonight and it is very disappointing,” Riddle said. “But we’re going to do the best we can and get ready for next week.”
The Huskies take on Huffman next Friday at 7 p.m. at Jack Wood Stadium.