Hornets rout Briarwood

Published 12:59 am Saturday, August 27, 2016

Chelsea’s Dylan Seabolt celebrates during the Hornets’ 43-15 win against Briarwood Christian on Aug. 26. (Contributed / Cari Dean)

Chelsea’s Dylan Seabolt celebrates during the Hornets’ 43-15 win against Briarwood Christian on Aug. 26. (Contributed / Cari Dean)

By BAKER ELLIS / Sports Editor

CHELSEA – For the second week in a row, the Chelsea Hornets started out sluggish, and for the second week in a row it didn’t matter one bit. Chelsea, playing in its’ first home game of the season, welcomed in rival Briarwood Christian on Aug. 26, and after going down 8-0 in the first quarter outscored the Lions 43-7 the rest of the way to get the easy win and improve to 2-0.

“I thought we played well,” Chelsea head coach Chris Elmore said after the game. “We got off to a slow start again, we didn’t score on the first drive and they did. We didn’t convert early. We were a little sluggish, but a part of that was them, they did a good job getting to Zalon (Reynolds) early. But we stayed the course. We’ve been the stronger team in the second half in both games, and that’s been the difference.”

Briarwood senior quarterback William Gray got the Lions on the board first, scampering in from 24 yards out to break the scoreless stalemate early. After a successful two-point try, Briarwood had an 8-0 lead on the road against a top tier offense. The only points the Hornets mustered in the first quarter was a Tyler Thomas 37-yard field goal, and Briarwood led after one, 8-3.

Matt Marquet, Chelsea’s senior do-everything quarterback, helped the Hornets out in one of his more unconventional ways in the early second quarter, pinning the Lions on their own one-yard line with a 50-yard punt. Briarwood was forced to punt, and Marquet soon after snuck in the end zone for Chelsea’s first touchdown of the game, which gave the Hornets a 10-8 lead.

After another Briarwood punt, the Chelsea offense found its’ groove and hammered out a consistent drive that ended with a Reynolds four-yard plunge, which gave Chelsea a 17-8 lead. Another Marquet touchdown was called back toward the end of the first half, and Thomas added his second field goal of the half, booting one in from 20 yards out with less than 30 second left in the second quarter, which gave Chelsea a 20-8 lead at the break.

Marquet broke off a neat 31-yard scoring run early in the third, then after Dylan Seabolt picked off his second pass of the night, Marquet found Lee Rickard in the back of the end zone on a six-yard touchdown strike, which gave the Hornets a 34-8 lead that Briarwood could not recover from.

Carson Eddy added an 85-yard kickoff return for Briarwood late in the fourth quarter, but it was much too little, much too late, as Chelsea rolled for the second week in a row.

Marquet finished the game 14-for-18 throwing the ball for 146 yards and a touchdown, while Gray was 4-for-8 throwing the ball for 27 yards. Gray also ran the ball 13 times for 73 yards, while Marquet picked up 113 yards on the ground as well as two rushing touchdowns.

Chelsea has now averaged 46 points per game over its first two games, and has only scored three points combined in the first quarter of those two games.