Golden Knights drop 26-6 road opener to Hodgson

NEWARK – Sussex Central High dropped its 2018 season opener on the road at Hodgson Vo-Tech, 26-6, Saturday morning despite picking off three passes and holding the Silver Eagles scoreless through the first 23:50 of the game.

Hodgson’s sophomore quarterback C.J. Henry threw three touchdowns on the day, including a 31-yard strike to Kam’Ryn Thomas with just 10 ticks left in the opening half.

A failed two-point conversion put the Silver Eagles ahead 6-0 at the halftime break.

“Early on, our sophomore quarterback wasn’t making some reads and things like that, but he was very poised,” said Hodgson coach Frank Moffett. “To start the second half, I thought we started to get some things going, C.J. started to make his reads and throw the ball down field.”

Senior quarterback Isaac Barnes lets go of a pass as he’s hit by a Hodgson defender during Saturday’s showdown. Barnes scored Central’s lone touchdown (Sussex Post/Ben Heck).

Hodgson opened the third quarter with an 86-yard scoring drive, capped by a two-yard touchdown pass to Ny’Ghee Lolley to extend the lead to 13-0.

Henry’s third touchdown, caught by Elizjah Lewis from 30 yards out, handed Hodgson the 20-0 advantage with 6:56 to play in the third quarter.

“I thought the defense played pretty well in the first half, until the mistakes. I thought they kept us in the game,” coach John Wells said. “Give them [Hodgson] credit for catching the football, but two of those touchdowns were blown coverages.”

Central responded to Hodgson’s latest scoring drive by orchestrating an 84-yard drive of their own, which was capped by a one-yard touchdown run on an Isaac Barnes quarterback sneak at the 11:52 mark of the fourth quarter.

Hodgson would block the extra point try.

A 20-yard touchdown run from sophomore running back Bobby Arnold on Hodgson’s ensuing possession would put the game out of reach for the Golden Knights.

Central’s offense lost three fumbles, but on defense Alton Dennis, Terrance Frisby and Isaiah Barnes each recorded an interception and the Knights forced two turnovers on downs and a punt.

Central’s Domonique Smith makes an open-field tackle on Hodgson’s Daniel Douglas (Sussex Post/Ben Heck).

“Our defense, for us, has to be one of the best in the state for us to meet any goals we have,” Wells said of his defensive unit. “If you don’t have that, you’re not going to get very far.”

“I’m an old school type of guy, defense wins games for us and that defense today played their butts off today,” said Moffett. “Giving up six points, that’s a really good football team. I got a chance to see them on tape and they make some big plays. I thought we did a nice job stopping their big plays today.”

Central will hold its home opener in Georgetown next Friday night against Queen Anne’s (MD). Kick-off is set for 7 p.m.

Sports Editor Ben Heck can be reached at bheck@newszap.com.

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.