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Hoover highlight show all about big plays

09/13/2013, 11:02pm PDT
By John Maffei

Cardinals’ team speed dusts Orange Glen in nonleague triumph.

— Hoover High seemed to be playing the game on fast forward.

The Cardinals used their speed to run over, around and through the Orange Glen defense en route to a 57-0 nonleague football win Friday.

The Cardinals scored on plays of 30, 55, 75, 32 and 44 yards. And those were just some of the first-half scores.

Damonte Holiday, Hoover’s all-state basketball player, scored on a 75-yard punt return, a 32-yard interception return and a 1-yard run near the end of the half.

And Hoover quarterback Thomas Spears-So threw first-half TD passes of 55 and 44 yards to Jarijah Harrison.

Holiday had a 47-yard punt return on his only touch of the second half, which was played with a running clock. His return set the Cardinals up at the OG 13-yard line, leading to a Hoover TD.

Hoover (2-1) was equally effective on defense, holding the Patriots to 33 total yards — 28 rushing and 5 passing. Orange Glen had 13 plays of one or fewer yards.

“And that’s after holding University to minus-3 yards last week,” Hoover coach Jerry Ralph said. “My defensive coordinator (Derek Dahlen) has installed an aggressive, tenacious defense. And the kids have really bought in.”

Leading 41-0 at halftime, Hoover scored on both its second-half possessions as Ralph substituted freely.

“We’ve come a long way,” Ralph said. “Damonte Holiday is a freak. I know he’s a great basketball player, but I think he’s a better football player.

“These last two games show that hard work pays off. And I think we can get better. I’m really proud of this team.”

Orange Glen (1-2) didn’t cross midfield in the entire game as Hoover’s Jaquille Bradford had three sacks and Paul Padilla added another.

“This is frustrating, very frustrating,” Orange Glen coach Kris Plash said. “We have a lot of work to do, that’s for sure.

“But we’ll start working Monday and see what happens.”

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