WILMINGTON — The third-ranked Class 3A Salesianum football team had a rare home afternoon game against the St. Georges on Sept. 24, but the matinee did not prove to be beneficial. The Hawks pulled off the road upset with a 21-14 win.
The Hawks got the ball first and went on a 10-minute opening drive, converting three third downs and a fourth down. But the Sals defense stiffened inside the red zone, and they sacked quarterback Donovan Brooks to take over on downs.
The Hawks would strike first on their second drive as Brooks threw a jump ball into the corner of the end zone and Elijah Alexander won the battle and hauled in the 12-yard pass and gave the Hawks the 7-0 lead. The Sals’ offense didn’t have the ball much in the first half but found the way to tie the game as Conor Campbell found Michael Portale on a wide receiver screen, and he darted 56 yards to tie the game with less then two minutes remaining in the first half.
Sallies had the ball for less then three minutes in the first half but headed into the locker room with a 7-7 tie.
The Hawks would score on their first drive in the second half as Gi’vonni Sanchez scampered nine yards to give the Hawks a 13-7 lead. The Sals’ offense would move the ball on its next possession as Campbell hit Lukas Ryan on a 27-yard pass play, but the Sals would turn the ball over on downs.
Salesianum’s defense stopped the Hawks, and the Sals got the ball back at their own 40. Campbell threw a strike to Ryan Rzucidlo, who would rumble down to the 9-yard line. Two plays later Cooper Brown ran five yards to for the score and the Sals led, 14-13, with 6:39 left in the game.
The next kickoff would change the game again as Terry White returned the ball 63 yards to the Salesianum 30, and a penalty put the ball at the Sallies 15. The Sals’ defense looked like they were going to get out of trouble, but Alexander caught a 16-yard touchdown pass from Brooks and then a two-point conversion to put the Hawks up, 21-14, with 4:55 left.
The Sals would turn the ball over on downs on their next two possessions as the Hawks’ defense sealed the win.
The Sals fell to 2-1 and travel to Hodgson next Saturday for a 2:30 p.m. start. The Hawks are also 2-1 and travel to Appoquinimink next Friday for a 7 p.m. kickoff.
All photos by Jason Winchell.