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Bears claim win #5

FAYETTEVILLE – This one came down to the wire, but the result was the same.

Michael Stephenson and Darnell Vaughan separated a Terry Sanford receiver from the football in the endzone with 15 ticks left on the clock here last night (Friday) and the Bears claimed a 27-20 win.

The victory was the fifth straight for Hertford County and left first-year skipper Scott Privott’s record unblemished.

“It’s always good to be undefeated at this point,” Privott said. “I learned a lot about our football team tonight and I think they learned a lot about themselves.

“Things didn’t go our way in the second half, but we kept fighting,” he added. “We could have quit facing that fourth down, but we didn’t.”

The Bears built a 27-7 lead early in the third quarter and then held on as the Bulldogs threatened in the closing minutes of the fourth quarter.

All totaled, the Bears rushed for 293 yards on the night and senior quarterback Antonio Vaughan added 114 through the air. Vaughan was also the leading rusher with 166 yards on 15 carries.

Hertford County got on the board early after Dontez Tyler recovered a Terry Sanford fumble at the Bulldogs’ 34-yardline. The Bears responded by punching it in four plays later when Vaughan scored from five yards out. Brandon Warren added the extra point to give HCHS a 7-0 lead with 7:14 to play in the first quarter.

The Bears found paydirt again after another Terry Sanford fumble went into the endzone and gave Hertford County the football on the 20-yardline.

HCHS marched 80 yards on 12 plays and scored when Monterio Hunter scooped up a fumble and rumbled 15 yards to the endzone with 5:20 to play in the second quarter. Warren’s extra point gave Hertford County a 14-0 lead.

Terry Sanford got their first score four minutes later when Jordan Vann capped a seven-play, 67-yard drive with a two-yard plunge. Andrew Court added the conversion and trimmed the deficit to 14-7 with 1:53 to play in the second quarter.

The Bears weren’t done in the first half, however, as they responded by driving 82 yards in just five plays to score before the end of the half. Vaughan capped the drive with a 59-yard scamper to paydirt. Warren added the kick and Hertford County led 21-7 at the break.

The Bears added their final score early in the third quarter. On their first possession of the second half, they marched 90 yards in seven plays. On fourth-and-eight, Vaughan connected with Hunter for a 43-yard strike to give the Bears a 27-7 lead with 8:53 to play in the third.

Terry Sanford answered just 17 seconds later when, on the first play from scrimmage, Dominique Pedrosia caught a 54-yard touchdown pass from Vann. Court’s extra point trimmed the Hertford County lead to 27-14.

After forcing a three-and-out by the Bears, Terry Sanford drove 77 yards on eight plays. Anthony Clanton scored on a 26-yard run which pulled the Bulldogs within 27-20.

In the closing minutes, the Bulldogs drove from their own 28-yardline to the Hertford County nine where they faced fourth-and-seven. Vann connected with a receiver in the back of the endzone, but Stephenson and D. Vaughan came through with the big hit that preserved the victory.

Hertford County is 5-0 overall as they head into next week’s Northeastern Coastal Conference opener at Northeastern.

(WDLZ-FM 98.3 Voice of the Bears Gattis Hodges contributed to this story.)