The nightmare commenced with a broken play.
Pinned on its 5 — following a 15-yard sack on third down — University City tried to boot itself out of danger but botched the attempt.
The pocket enclosed around the punter, Hoover defenders breaching the Centurions’ barrier of blockers, and the deflected kick ricocheted back into a University City player’s grasp for a safety.
Then came the second score.
On the ensuing possession, Damonte Holiday shed an attempted tackle, danced himself free, then dusted the defense for a 50-yard touchdown for a 16-point lead.
That ignited further damage — more University City turnovers, more Holiday touchdowns. The night finally concluded with a Cardinals 30-7 rout of the Centurions (0-2) in Hoover’s home opener.
“Every time I touch the ball, no matter where it is on the field, no matter what the defense gives me, I’m looking to take it to the house for my teammates and coaches,” Holiday said.
And the All-CIF first-teamer did, dragging defenders into the end zone en route to 125 total yards and three touchdowns after Brawley blanketed him and the Cardinals last week.
Turnovers marred the Cardinals, too. They coughed up the ball twice in the air and once on the ground. However, their defense averted any threat.