It was only fitting that the first Hoover touchdown, the one that all but clinched a 22-0 homecoming afternoon victory over Morse, was scored by Austin Brown.
Brown is a 5-foot-11, 230-pound junior defensive lineman.
Ahead 9-0 on three field goals but dominating on defense, the Cardinals got the game-breaker with 7:47 to play when Brown burst through the line and was in perfect position to police a fumbled handoff, racing 49 yards for the TD.
Yes, racing. Though several tried, none of the Tigers could catch him.
“That was my first touchdown,” said Brown, who was mobbed by teammates. “We practice a drill called ‘scoop and score.’ The coaches work us hard and that’s why I was able to run so fast.”
Hoover improved to 5-1 overall and 1-0 in the City League. Morse dropped to 1-5, 0-1.
Brown led a defense that limited Morse to 84 yards rushing and 40 passing.
“They only give up five points a game,” said coach Jerry Ralph. “This was a big win for us.”
It was certainly an emotional one after the Cardinals were unable to play the game at night because of a court injunction stemming from a dispute with school neighbors.
The other Hoover scores came on three field goals by Gerard Valenzuela and a 5-yard TD run by Israel Ahmad (16 carries for 111 yards).