Bears avenge loss

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 16, 2004

AHOSKIE – Last year, Hertford County rolled into the state 3-A play-offs with a full head of steam, only to be embarrassed by 15th-seeded West Carteret in opening round action.

The Bears waited 366 days to extract a measure of revenge as Kenneth Liverman, LaMarcus Bond and Jaquin Sessoms combined to rush for 287 yards and three TD’s as HCHS pounded West Carteret, 41-22, here Saturday night in a game delayed by Friday’s heavy rain.

The win, coupled with White Oak’s 27-14 upset win at fourth-seeded Kinston, will allow the #5 Bears to host a second-round play-off game this Friday. There, HCHS (7-5 overall) hosts White Oak at 7:30 p.m.

But before the Bears could make plans for second-round action, they first had to scrape that West Carteret monkey off their backs. HCHS, winners of six straight games and seven of their last eight regular season outings, didn’t waste anytime in sending a message to the Patriots as the Bears marched 76 yards in six plays on the game’s opening possession, a drive capped by Bond’s 52-yard scamper to paydirt. Michael Burton booted the PAT, staking HCHS to a 7-0 lead at the 8:43 mark of the first quarter.

After a defensive stop on 4th down at their 39 yardline, the Bears set sail on a 61-yard drive, this one taking six plays. Bond’s 23-yard run ended that march and, coupled with Burton’s PAT, padded the HCHS lead to 14-0 with 4:20 left in the first period.

The Patriots rallied to slice that deficit to four (14-10) thanks to a Brad Campen seven-yard scoring run and a 43-yard field goal by University of Tennessee recruit Matt Dodge. Both scores came in the second quarter.

But the Bears would not let the visitors creep any closer when, three plays after the field goal, Liverman darted 77 yards to paydirt. Burton’s PAT staked HCHS to a 21-10 lead with 5:23 left before halftime.

Sixty-three seconds later, it became a 28-10 lead when a high snap sailed over Corey Desteunder’s head and into the endzone. There, HCHS defender James Futrell pounced on the loose pigskin for six HCHS points. Burton tacked on the PAT.

West Carteret did manage to tally a pair of field goals over the last four minutes of the first half as Dodge split the uprights on kicks from 33 and 49 yards, getting his team to within 28-16 at halftime.

Set-up by a Sessoms interception late in the third quarter, the Bears scored five plays into the final period on Tydreke Powell’s bullish three-yard run. The PAT kick failed, leaving the Bears with a 34-16 lead with 9:37 left in the game.

West Carteret answered with a nine-play, 83-yard drive capped by Jacob Anfinson’s four-yard run. The conversion pass failed, but the Patriots still had life, trailing 34-22 with just under six minutes remaining.

But Hertford County would not be upset on this night as the Bears answered with a seven-play, 57-yard drive, which ended with Powell’s one-yard run and Burton’s PAT.

HCHS finished with 406 yards of total offense. Leading the way on the ground were Liverman (8 carries for 114 yards), Bond (13-93) and Sessoms (11-80). Quarterback Danny Dembry added 95 yards through the air on a 4-of-7 passing performance.

West Carteret mustered 236 total yards led by Desteunder’s 102 passing yards.