WELLSBORO — The Wellsboro Hornets hosted their fourth annual Hall of Fame induction during the halftime presentation of the Wellsboro Hornets and Towanda Black Knights division game this past Friday, Sept. 13.
During the presentation the Hornets honored two former athletes who in their time as Hornets made an impact on their respective sports. The first honoree was Mike Burns, who played football, baseball and basketball in his time at Wellsboro. He helped the Hornets to two league championships in basketball and earned recognition as an honorable mention all-state football player.
The other athlete honored at this event was Susan Sweet, who was a trailblazer in women’s sports in Wellsboro, with the passing of the Title IX. She played four years of varsity basketball and also helped lead her team to a championship. She was also a standout volleyball player who took part in four different league championships. Susan also held many track and field records at the time, as she dominated as an athlete in her time at Wellsboro.
During the game, the Hornets did not disappoint on such a historical night for those being honored and the fans. Wellsboro opened up the drive with a long drive that was stalled near the endzone. The Hornets ended up settling for a field goal by Zach Singer to bring the score to 3-0 with 7:26 remaining in the first. The Hornet’s next few drives stalled but they continued to hold the Towanda team to no scoring to close out the first.
In the second quarter, the Hornets defense and offense both started to come alive. In the opening minutes of the second, Towanda quarterback Tanner Kunkle dropped back for a pass down the right sideline when Darryn Callahan snatched the ball, and took it nearly 90-yards for the Hornets first score of the game.
The defense continued to suffocate Towanda and gave their offense a chance to extend the lead. After a strong drive, the Hornet’s capitalized with Hauser scoring on a 34-yard scamper, to give them a comfortable lead with six minutes left in the half.
Towanda, desperate to get their offense going, sustained a long drive capped off by an 8-yard run by quarterback Kunkle to get them on the board, but still with a large deficit being down 17-6.
With two minutes left in the half, the Hornets put together a long drive helped by a few penalties that set up quarterback Isaac Keane for a 12-yard touchdown pass with only 17 seconds left on the clock. Going into halftime, the Hornets were in extremely good shape, up 24-6, and Hauser closing in on a historical milestone with over 150 yards in the first half alone.
With halftime over, the Hornets scored within the first few minutes of the third quarter, with another drive ending in yet another long touchdown for the Hornets with a 39-yard run for Aiden Hauser, and on that run broke the Wellsboro all-time rushing record of 3,448 yards, with six games left in the season.
Towanda struck back soon after with another touchdown pass, but it seemed to be too little, too late, with the score at 31-12 with only a quarter and a half left to play. With two minutes left in the quarter Hauser struck again, to score his third touchdown on the night and his 13th touchdown of the season.
As the teams opened up the fourth quarter, the Hornets started to pour it on, with three touchdowns and shut Towanda out for the remainder of the game. The score in the end was 54-12 with the Hornets securing their second straight win, and the third game of the season eclipsing the 50 point mark.
Looking at the performance for Hauser, it was his usual dominant game, rushing for 237 yards on only 20 attempts and three touchdowns. Hauser has put together an extraordinary senior season so far in 2019, through four games he has 872 yards on only 79 attempts, with his yards per carry sitting at a staggering 11. With six games remaining, it should be noted he is on pace to rush for nearly 2,200 yards and is also on pace for almost 33 touchdowns.
Other key performers from Friday’s victory were Alex Burrell who rushed for 65 yards on only four carries, Isaac Keane who not only passed for a touchdown, but also ran for 37 yards, including a seven yard touchdown in the fourth quarter.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Hornets suffocated the Towands team, allowing only 10 first downs, 250 yards and causing four turnovers throughout the contest. Tyler Hancock lead the way with nine tackles in the game. Callahan also chipped in two tackles, an interception returned for a touchdown and two punt blocks.
The Hornets will need to use the momentum of the last two victories in order to prepare for the Hughesville Spartans team who is looking for their first victory of the season. The Hornets will travel to Hughesville Sept. 20 for a 7 p.m. kickoff.
Team Stats: WO TA
First Downs: 18 10
Run att-yards:42-431 38-195
Pass Yards: 31 60
Pass Comp-Atts:4-11 4-9
Total Yards: 462 255
Passing: Isaac Keane 4-9 39 yards 1 TD
Rushing: Aiden Hauser 20-237 3 TD; Alex Burrell 4-65; Isaac Keane 6-37 1 TD; Silas Wagaman 2-31; Darryn Callahan 3-29; Nick Smith 5-26; Conner Adams 2-6 1 TD.
Receiving: Silas Wagaman 2-17; Logan Henry 1-12 1 TD; Aidan Hauser 1-2.