Football beats Wagner, wins Hammerbowl


Senior Alan Caracheo holds up the Hammerbowl trophy after their win against Wagner. The Rockets beat the Thunderbirds, 43-42.

On November 5, Judson Rockets faced off against the Wagner Thunderbirds in their annual HammerBowl game at D.W Rutledge Stadium. 

To start the game, Wagner received the ball and was off to a great start, scoring on a very time-consuming drive, making the score 7-0. On the kickoff, the T-birds tried for an onside kick and recovered it at midfield, which gave them great field position. Following the onside kick, the T-birds scored another touchdown, making the score 14-0. On the next kickoff, the Rockets receive the ball and finally get their chance. After a good-looking start, the Rockets were forced to punt, but the punt was muffed and recovered by sophomore Miles Davis. The Rockets were able to capitalize with their first score with a QB run by senior Michael Burroughs. The kick was made by junior Adrian Cortez, making the score 14-7.

To kick off the second quarter, the Rockets kicked off to the T-birds. Wagner was successful on another drive with a quick rushing touchdown, making the score 21-7, which put the Rockets in a tough situation. Following the T-Bird touchdown, it was back and forth stops until the T-birds started a drive that ended with a fumble recovered by senior Roel Garcia. The Rockets quickly capitalized with another score with an amazing trick-play pass to junior Gavin Harris, making the score 13-21. Cortez made another field goal, making the score 14-21 late in the second quarter. With seconds left, the T-birds had one last chance to score before the half and that is what they did, scoring with a deep pass making the score 28-14 at halftime.

To start the third quarter, the T-birds tried another onside kick and recovered it, which gave them great field position once again. Following the onside kick, the T-birds scored again on another deep pass, making the score 35-14. On the kickoff, Wagner tried another onside kick but failed, which gave the Rockets good field position. The Rockets drove down the field and scored again on a three-yard run by sophomore Nathaniel Stanley, which made the score 20-35. Cortez made the field goal once again, making the score 21-35. After the Rockets kicked the ball off to the T-birds, the Rockets defense was playing phenomenally, stopping a fake punt by the T-birds, which gave them possession at mid-field. The Rockets capitalized with a bomb of a throw to junior Jerimiah Dunn, making the score 27-35. Cortez made the field goal 28-35 taking the game into the fourth and final quarter.

To start the fourth quarter, the T-birds received the ball and wasted no time to get things going. The T-birds scored in less than 2 minutes into the quarter, making the score 28-42. Even though just getting scored on, the Rockets didn’t quit, drove down the field, and scored with another Burroughs run, making the score 34-42. Cortez made the field goal, making the score 35-42. Following the Rockets scoring, they kicked the ball off to the T-birds and pinned them deep in their own territory. The Rocket’s defense came up big in the last few minutes, getting a fourth-down stop, giving their offense the ball at midfield. The Rockets drove down the field late in the fourth quarter. They were making big play after big play, all the way down the field, which set them up for another touchdown run by Burroughs, making the score  41-42. This time, the field goal team did not come on the field and the offense stayed. The Rockets went for two and scored it with a short pass to junior Ariez Sylve-Matautia, which made the score 43-42 giving the Rockets the lead for the first time in the entire game. On the kickoff, the T-birds fumbled and it was recovered by sophomore Josiah Williams, which gave the Rockets possession and ended the game with a final score of 43-42 Judson.

Oddly, this was the last game of the season with football ending the season with a 4-6.

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