After nearly 300 minutes of football this season, Hampton was trailing for the first time. The Crabbers finally had themselves a game.
Well, for a few minutes anyway.
More ticked off than freaked out by falling behind, Hampton bounced back for a 63-7 waxing of Bethel Friday night at Darling Stadium. The Crabbers (7-0, 6-0 Peninsula District) scored 21 points in the second, third, and fourth quarters to remain unbeaten heading into next week's showdown against Phoebus.
"We got angry," said running back/linebacker Kavon Bellamy, who ran for 183 yards and three touchdowns in three quarters. "The defense was angry, the offense was angry, everybody was angry. We came out sleepy. But after that, we put the pedal to the metal."
That's the best way to describe it.
In handing the Bruins (5-2, 4-2) their most lopsided defeat ever, Hampton piled up 340 yards on the ground and averaged 9 yards per snap. The line — center Lydell Washington, guards Troy Garrett and Trei Banks and tackles Clifton Moore and P.J. Wright — were opening truck-sized holes.
And Bellamy and Dallas Cogdell (seven carries, 82 yards) were finding them.
All in all, it was a dominant performance a week before the biggest game of the year. Not that you could get the Crabbers to talk about the Phantoms just yet.
"It's a big game," Bellamy said. "But we're going to take next week day by day."
Hampton came out a little flat yet still had a first-and-goal from the 2-yard line midway through the first quarter. But on second down, quarterback David Watford fumbled the snap and Bethel's Kory Davis recovered.
That led to an impressive nine-play, 90-yard drive by the Bruins. Frank Brown's 8-yard touchdown pass to Brendan Cole put Bethel ahead 7-0 with four seconds left in the first quarter.
"It was a reality check," Washington said.
It didn't last long.
Two minutes later, Bellamy capped a five-play drive with a 4-yard touchdown run. After Bethel went three-and-out, Bellamy scored on a 65-yard run that might be the play of the year. He appeared to be stopped at the line by a swarm of Bruin defenders, but he emerged from the pile and was gone.
Watford's 1-yard sneak made it 21-7 with 4:09 remaining in the half. Hampton threatened again with a first-and-goal from the 4-yard line. But after calling their final timeout with 24 seconds left, the Crabbers ran out of time when Watford was stopped at the 1-yard line.
The third quarter was pretty much the same as the first. And the fourth was pretty much the same as the third.
"We started sluggish, but in the second half we got it cranked up," Hampton coach Mike Smith said. "We had two really bad errors that (took away) 14 points. But we had a lot of respect for this bunch. We were a little quicker than they were and we played hard."
HAMPTON 63, BETHEL 7Bethel;7;0;0;0—7Hampton;0;21;21;21—63First quarterB: Cole 8 pass from Brown, :04 (Baker kick).Second quarterH: Bellamy 4 run, 10:03 (Hutcheson kick).H: Bellamy 65 run, 7:54 (Hutcheson kick).H: Watford 1 run, 4:09 (Hutcheson kick).Third quarterH: Cogdell 12 run, 7:39 (Hutcheson kick).H: Bellamy 12 run, 5:20 (Hutcheson kick).H: Moore 59 interception return, 4:38 (Hutcheson kick).Fourth quarterH: Charity 22 run, 9:33 (Hutcheson kick).H: Charity 2 run, 6:01 (Hutcheson kick)H: Flood 18 interception return, 3:35 (Hutcheson kick).;Bet;HamFirst downs;7;20Rushes-yards;18-34;39-340Passing yards;123;76Passes;9-23-3;4-7-0Punts-avg.;7-35;1-41Penalties-yards;10-89;6-55Fumbles-lost;3-1;2-1Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times