DeSales at Hartley: Stallions-Hawks rematch to decide CCL title
Following his team’s 42-32 win Sept. 25 at Watterson, Hartley coach Brad Burchfield used words like “good Catholic brotherly love” but also “animosity” to describe the emotions that were on display.
He expects to see both of those seemingly opposite reactions again when Hartley plays host to DeSales on Friday, Oct. 2, with the CCL championship on the line.
Both the Hawks and Stallions are 3-1 in the league — with Hartley at 3-2 overall and DeSales at 4-1 overall — entering the final game before the playoffs begin for both teams.
Brackets for Division III, Region 11 will be released Thursday, Oct. 1, and there’s a likelihood that both programs will have first-round byes in a region with 23 teams expected to participate.
DeSales beat Hartley 24-21 on Sept. 11, but then lost to Watterson 35-34 in two overtimes a week later to fall back into a first-place tie with the Hawks.
“It’s exciting,” Burchfield said. “I long for the good old days of the CCL. (Hartley’s game against Watterson on Sept. 25) was a war. There were hurt feelings, and it was a battle. It was like it should be. It’s memorable for the schools and the kids and it’s what we owe our communities and our schools, so let’s go.”
In the first matchup with Hartley, DeSales senior running back Quintell Quinn rushed for 111 yards on 17 carries, junior running back Jonathan Thompson had six rushes for 86 yards and two touchdowns, senior wide receiver Jordan Johnson added a 32-yard touchdown catch and sophomore quarterback Nicky Pentello rushed for 101 yards on 14 carries.
Pentello has been out with an injury since DeSales’ loss to Watterson, however, and might not return until the postseason.
Stallions senior quarterback Whit Hobgood was 6-for-9 passing for 157 yards and one touchdown in the loss to Watterson and completed seven of 11 passes while also rushing for 40 yards in a 48-7 win over St. Charles on Sept. 25.
DeSales had a balanced rushing attack against the Cardinals, as Quinn ran for 106 yards and four touchdowns on 10 carries, Thompson had 94 yards and one touchdown on 10 rushes and freshman Nasir Phillips added 77 yards on 12 carries with one score.
After Hartley quarterback Peyton Underwood completed a 43-yard touchdown pass to Richard Kenny early in the fourth quarter to give his team a 21-17 lead over the Stallions in the earlier matchup, Thompson ran for a 55-yard touchdown on the next series for what would be the game-winning points.
The Hawks then had two drives stall and DeSales held on for the victory.
Hartley senior running back Sumo Kesselly has been battling a nagging injury but is expected to be in the mix at running back against the Stallions, along with senior Marcelis Parker and juniors Trey Saunders and Nyal Johnson.
Parker had 24 carries for 115 yards and two touchdowns against St. Charles. Johnson ran for 90 yards and Saunders added 72.
“We’ll look at some of the things we did well and things we can do better,” DeSales coach Ryan Wiggins said. “That’s one thing about playing a team twice in a matter of three weeks. How did they change, what are they doing differently, injuries at this time are a factor. It’ll be fun.
“It’s a whole different mindset knowing that you’ll likely have a bye and then the playoffs start after that. You try to have a championship focus after that and throw all the haymakers you can and when it’s all said and done, it’s exciting.”
DeSALES at HARTLEY
•When: 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 2
•Last meeting: Sept. 11, DeSales 24-21
•DeSales (4-1 overall, 3-1 in CCL) to date: Defeated Watterson 28-22 (OT); def. Mansfield Senior 35-12; def. Hartley 24-21; lost to Watterson 35-34 (2OT); def. St. Charles 48-7
•Hartley (3-2 overall, 3-1 in CCL) to date: Lost to Cincinnati Moeller 34-17; def. Watterson 28-21; lost to DeSales 24-21; def. St. Charles 49-10; def. Watterson 42-32
•Top Stallions: Nathan Barber (WR/DB), Billy Cain IV (OL/DL), Jordan Johnson (WR/DB), Jackson Hartman (OL/DL), Whit Hobgood (QB), Quintell Quinn (RB/LB), Matthew Stewart (TE/DL/LS), Jonathan Thompson (RB/LB) and Jason Velazquez II (WR/LB)
•Top Hawks: James Crenshaw (OL/DL), Richard Kenny (WR/DB), Nyal Johnson (RB/DB), Sumo Kesselly (RB/LB), Marcelis Parker (RB/LB), Trey Saunders (RB/DB), Tony Thivener (OL/LB), Daniel Tooson (TE/DL) and Peyton Underwood (QB)