The Hutto Hippos took on the La Vega Pirates Friday night at home, still looking for their first win. The game was hard-fought, but the Hippos could not hold onto a late lead, falling 29-28.
La Vega received the opening kickoff, and began to drive the ball down the field. The Hippo defense held strong behind a Rolando Ruiz tackle for a loss, and gave the ball to their offense through a Derek Camero interception.
The Hippo offense were able to drive down the field with some big plays from Davion Davis, who got the start at quarterback. Davis capped off the drive with a two-yard touchdown along the right sideline, and the Hippos took their first lead, 7-0 after a Jared Haynes PAT.
The Pirates and Hippos traded the next few possessions, until La Vega was able to sustain a drive and put some points on the board. With 3:57 left in the first quarter, DeTrayten Wagoner bursted through the Hutto defense for a 69-yard rushing touchdown to level the score.
La Vega would eventually end the quarter with the ball again and on the doorstep of the Hutto end zone. The Pirates would cap off that drive with a 26-yard field goal from Brian Gonzales to give them the lead, 10-7.
The Hippos responded in a big way. Hutto managed touchdowns on both of their drives in the second quarter, as La Vega managed to miss a field goal in between Hutto offensive drives. The first touchdown was a 37-yard rushing effort right through the center of the Pirate defense by fullback Rolando Ruiz to put the Hippos ahead, 14-10.
Darryl Harrison would score a huge, momentum swinging touchdown with 31 seconds left in the first half on a beautifully placed pass by Davis. The Hippos would go into the locker room with a 21-10 lead.
Hutto was set to receive the opening kickoff of the second half, and the Hippos moved right down the field. Tymarrick Stevens would cap off a 10-play 3:29 drive with a 14-yard receiving touchdown from Davis.
With 8:31 left in the third quarter, the Hippos led 28-10. Unfortunately, their big lead would not last long.
La Vega would put another score on the board through the use of their rushing attack. Javon Arnett would cross the goal line from six yards out with 5:08 left in the third, cutting the lead to 28-16 after a missed PAT. Arnett would score again with 1:48 left in the third, further trimming the lead down.
After three quarters, Hutto still led 28-23.
The final quarter saw the Hippos continue their drive from the third quarter, but to no avail, as they were forced to punt it back to La Vega. The next two possessions saw each team punt again, until the Pirates took over with 4:18 left on the clock and at their own seven-yard line.
A big-time tackle for a loss from Derrek Davis helped the Hippos back La Vega into a third down and 13 at their own three-yard line. Hutto was nearly able to get Pirate quarterback Steven Scott down inside of the end zone, but the Pirates would convert the subsequent fourth down play, and they were in business.
More big plays from the Pirate offense through their ground game would doom the Hippos on their final defensive possession. Hutto would hold on a second and goal situation, but could not hold off La Vega on the third and goal.
Wagoner plunged across the goal line for his second touchdown with just 11 seconds left on the clock. The Pirates were unsuccessful on their two-point try, but nonetheless held the lead in the dying seconds, 29-28.
Unfortunately, the Hippos were not able to muster some last second magic before the clock read 0:00. Hutto droped to 0-2 after the loss.
Davion Davis led the team through the air and on the ground with 205 yards passing and two touchdowns to go along with 82 yards rushing and one touchdown. Darryl Harrison led the receiving corps with 115 yards and one touchdown.
The La Vega Pirates ground game was the biggest factor in the game. Their rushing attack helped them hold the ball for nearly 28 of the 48 minutes played. La Vega ran 57 times for 378 yards on the ground, 209 of which came after halftime. The Pirates averaged 6.6 yards per carry, and DeTrayten Wagoner was one of their main focuses. The senior running back carried the ball 22 times for 230 yards and two touchdowns.
The Hutto Hippos return to the field this Friday night, as they will face the McCallum Knights in Austin at House Park.