.By Joe Cardello The Essex Reporter
The Hornets football team played their last game of the regular season at Munson Field in South Burlington on Saturday. Due to the teachers’ strike in the South Burlington school district there was some uncertainty earlier in the week as to whether or not the teams would be playing. The game was rescheduled for Oct. 18 after some mediation. The Hornets who are now 6-2 after a 35-30 win over the Rebels have secured the number four seed for post-season play.
On a windy and damp Saturday night the Hornets took the field against South Burlington, 1-7. Although the Rebels record doesn’t seem favorable Essex head coach Charlie Burnett stated that they are a “plenty good football team” and expected them to put up a fight.
The Hornets looked to their running game in order to score against the Rebels. They tallied five rushing touchdowns overall and were able to rush for a two-point conversion in the third quarter. Brendan Gleason had two touchdowns in the first half. The first was off of a 72-yard kick return and the other on a 32-yard run. Cody Greene rushed the ball in during the second quarter on a five-yard streak and Joseph Robertson accounted for two short touchdowns runs in the second half along with the two-point conversion run.
“Special teams play was a highlight for us, particularly return teams. We amassed 211 return yards to South Burlington’s 81,” said Burnett. “The kickoff return for a touchdown was huge as well as several returns that gave us short fields to work with, usually resulting in scores for the offense. The defense played pretty well given the duress it was under with South Burlington’s spread offense and the performances of their quarterback and wideouts.”
Ending their season on a three-game winning streak the Hornets are eager for tournament play.
“We feel pretty confident with our spot in the tournament. It is a long-standing goal and tradition to get into post-season play at Essex. Playing at home is an added bonus, especially for our seniors who mean so much to the program. Now we want to add to the legacy of success by posting playoff victories and advancing towards the finals.”
They will host the 4-8 BFA-St. Albans Bobwhites tomorrow, Oct. 24, at 7 p.m.