What promised to be a clash at the top of the ACAC turned out to be a romp as Adams Central answered nearly every question that could be asked of them in the first two quarters, triggering a running clock while also shutting out what seemed like an unstoppable Heritage offense and winning 38-0.
Jack Hamilton was elusive and talented all night long, running for 144 yards and two touchdowns and tossing his first pass attempt for a 20-yard score to Ryan Tester in the second quarter. It only took the Jets QB a few plays to get on the scoreboard, breaking through tackles and cruising 71 yards for the game’s opening score less than two minutes into the highly-anticipated contest. Hamilton’s yards came on just 12 carries.
The QB’s best play came when the game had already been decided and looked more like a play Heritage fans had grown used to by watching Kobe Meyer all year. Instead, it was Hamilton making people miss and avoiding two potential sacks to miraculously escape and gain 23 yards on the final play of the third quarter.
Heritage’s only highlight of the first quarter was actually on a big play by the Jets. Adams Central blocked the Patriots’ punt but Caleb Abbott recovered it and made it just across the line for a first down, but the Pats could not make any progress.
While Adams Central had little trouble moving the ball, it was the exact opposite for the potent Patriots, who had just 27 yards on the ground in the entire first half. Heritage QB Kobe Meyer had no time to react in the pocket and rarely had the opportunity to get outside the tackles and make plays. He finished the game with just 32 yards in total for rushing and was just 9 of 19 for 53 yards in the air. The Patriots’ longest completion was a 15-yard catch by Kyle Heintzelman late in the game after the running clock.
After Hamilton set the opening tone with his big keeper, showing the Jets’ dominance on the line, the game plan rolled over to the bread and butter for Adams Central, Keegan Bluhm. The senior picked up chunk after chunk and on his sixth carry of the game, he scored from 28 yards out.
Less than three minutes later, Bluhm scampered in from 36 yards out, moving his game total to 99 yards on the ground with a minute to play in the first quarter and smashing a Heritage defender along the way. He finished with 120 on the ground.
The quick turnaround on Bluhm’s second touchdown came from a turnover when senior Cam Smith picked off Kobe Meyer from his knees.
Bluhm did most of the work on the Jets’ next drive and got the team all the way to the one-yard line, where Hamilton did the job himself and with five minutes left in the first half, Adams Central had stunned the visiting Patriots at 28-0.
The only scoring highlight for Heritage didn’t count when Meyer made it to the end zone but was called back from 32 yards out after a meaningless hold was rightfully called by the officials.
Trevor Currie converted all five PAT kicks and capped the second half off with a 29-yard field goal. He also had a sack on the defensive side of the ball.
The announced attendance for the game was over 2200, with cars lining the entrances to Adams Central High School in all directions.