Despite a 23-8 win against Hazelwood East Friday night, Hickman’s overall play paralleled the conditions of the football field it was playing on: sloppy.
The Kewpies racked up 14 penalties for 145 yards, turned the ball over four times and squandered three scoring opportunities in their opponents red zone.
Fortunately for Hickman (4-1), the combined effort of its defense and special teams secured the win on homecoming night.
The Kewpies held Hazelwood East (3-3) to 169 total yards of offense with just 26 of those yards coming on the ground. Coupled with three blocked punts and three Spartan turnovers, Hickman won the field position battle for most of the night.
With a little less than eight minutes remaining in the fourth quarter and Hickman up 23-8, Spartans quarterback Carl Wood fumbled near the Kewpies’ 20-yard line. Junior Aaron Cawlfield recovered the ball for Hickman at the 25-yard line to ultimately seal the victory for the Kewpies.
Cawlfield was almost single-handedly the difference maker in the game. Along with the fumble recovery, Cawlfield added two quarterback sacks, two blocked punts and 66 yards rushing.
Hickman’s first score came on its first drive of the game at the halfway point of the opening quarter. Starting at its own 35-yard line, chipped its way down the field before junior quarterback Andrew Perkins scampered into the end zone from 16 yards out.
Perkins finished the game with two rushing touchdowns and 235 total offensive yards.
After its first score, Hickman scored 10 more unanswered points before Hazelwood East got on the board with less than two minutes remaining in the first half.
With five and a half minutes left in the first half, the Spartans, primarily out of a shotgun formation, moved down the field picking apart Hickman’s secondary before Wood found wide receiver Chris Brooks in the end zone on a four-yard fade pass.
The Spartans converted on the two point conversion to put the score at 16-8. On the ensuing drive, Hazelwood East blocked a Hickman field goal attempt with two seconds left in the first half to keep the deficit at eight points heading into the locker room.
Hickman’s defense put the clamps down in the second half, though, allowing just 62 yards of offense without a score.
Senior Cedric Alvis snapped his streak of four consecutive games with at least one touchdown but did come down with four catches for 51 yards.