It was not your average Friday night at Hornet Football Field. The chili was being served, seniors were being honored, and there were playoff implications on the line as the Hornets hosted the Redbirds of West Frankfort. In a one-sided affair, the Hornets came away victorious with a 49-20 beat down. It was a much-needed win for the Hornets coming on the heels of their first loss of the season last week at DuQuoin.
“Our kids were down, but I thought they responded this week, we had a really good week of practice, and I thought they prepared well this week and came out and started fast,” Coach Kozuszek said.
The scoring started quickly for the Hornets when Cole Malawy and Gavin Baldwin connected for a 23-yard touchdown strike. It was 7-0 Nashville with 9:13 left to play in the first quarter. West Frankfort was able to answer quickly courtesy of a one-yard touchdown by junior running back Tanner Clark. After the extra point things were knotted up at seven a piece.
Exactly two minutes later Nashville regained the advantage as Malawy threw his second touchdown of the game, this time to senior Jackson Aulds for eight yards. On West Frankfort’s ensuing drive, Nashville’s Ryker Reese was able to get to the quarterback and forced a fumble, leaving the Hornet offense with a short field. It was one of three turnovers the Nashville defense was able to force throughout the game.
On the first play after the turnover, Malawy threw his third touchdown to his third different receiver, this time to Jaxon Goforth for 15-yards. The touchdown gave Nashville a 21-7 lead with still 3:08 to go in the opening quarter. Nashville’s offense was able to find the end zone one more time before the quarter expired as Julian Metcalf rumbled his way in for a one-yard score. After the Cristian Ocampo extra point, Nashville led 28-7 after a long first quarter. With time dwindling down in the first half, Baldwin caught his second touchdown of the game from two yards out. Baldwin finished with two touchdowns on the evening. Malawy finished the game with 226 yards through the air and four touchdowns. The