Sponsored by MDG Flooring
By Josh Jeffi
Barberton,OH-Mother Nature decided she wanted to watch some old school High School Football as the Highland Hornets traveled to Barberton to take on the Magics in a Week 10 Suburban League match up. The rain fell virtually all game making conditions on the natural grass field wet and muddy. The Hornets received the opening kickoff. While trying to find their footing, Highland QB Jack McGinty tried to connect with his Receiver only to have it intercepted by Barberton DB Charles Hornacek. Hornacek was able to return the interception to their own 40 yard line but the Magics could not take advantage. With 1:43 left in the first quarter, Barberton got on the scoreboard first when QB Kaeleb Vega scrambled 50 yards for the touchdown putting the Magics up 7-0 towards the end of the first quarter.
Highland would answer in the second quarter when Jake Rogers scampered 10 yards for the game tying score. On the Magics next possession they were forced to punt after a huge sack for a loss on third down. The Hornets drove down the field, inside the red zone when McGinty made another mistake by throwing an interception. His second on the night. Barberton finally got the ball into the hands of sophomore running back Kyrie Young. He led the Magics down to the 10 yard line. Barberton failed to covert on a 4th and 6 turning over the ball on downs. Highland took a knee and the teams went into the locker rooms at the half tied at 7.
The Magics received the ball the start of the second half and it only took them just over a minute to take a 14-7 lead on a 62 yard touchdown run by Kyrie Young. The rest of the third quarter, both teams had 3 possessions each. A combination of great defense, inefficient offense, and weather made for a lack of action and a quick third quarter. The score was 14-7 after three.
Kyrie Young decided to make his presence known again. This time, nine seconds into the fourth quarter. He rattled of a 33 yard touchdown run, his second of the game. The extra point was good giving the Magics a commanding 21-7 lead in the fourth quarter. Highland had a great opportunity to score later on in the fourth when McGinty hit wide receiver Bryce Profitt over the middle for a large gain. On the run, the Magics were able force a fumble and recover the ball on the Highland 27 yard line. The Magics were not able to add any points and were forced to punt on the next possession.
With 8:05 left in the game, The Magics called two questionable passing plays in which the second was intercepted by Bryce Profitt. Profitt returned the ball the the Barberton 24 yard line. One the very next play, McGinty hit Profitt over the middle for a long touchdown. The extra point was good making it 21-14 with seven minutes left in the game. Highland was able to get the ball back with 2:04 left in the game. After two plays the Magics’ Charles Hornacek intercepted his second pass of the game to preserve a Barberton 21-14 win and a perfect 10-0 season, winning the Suburban League American Division two years in a row. The Magics will host a first round playoff match up next week while Highland’s season ends sitting just outside the playoffs. The Hornets finished 2018 with an outstanding 8-2 record.