JARED FIELDS • PICAYUNE STAFF
MARBLE FALLS — With two running backs weighing well over 220 pounds each, the Halletsville Sacred Heart football team has relied on a pounding running game all year.
Against Faith Academy on Oct. 17, it was no different.
However, despite a 20-0 loss, Flames head coach Russ Roberts said his defense played as well as he’s seen.
“It may be one of the best defensive games we’ve played since I’ve been at Faith,” Roberts said. “They’re used to scoring just about every possession … and we may have stopped them tonight more than they’ve been stopped all year.”
That slow and steady rushing attack kept the Faith Academy offense off the field for much of the first half. After Sacred Heart scored a touchdown on its opening drive, the Indians recovered the kickoff when it bounced off a Flames player.
Faith Academy forced a turnover on downs and took its first offensive snap with 10:16 left in the second quarter.
That drive also resulted in a failed fourth-down play.
Sacred Heart failed to score again in the half and down just 6-0 at the break, the Flames remained within striking distance.
However, two punts and two fumbles in the second half stalled any comeback hopes for the Flames.
Sacred Heart scored on its first possession of the second half, and then its final touchdown came with about six minutes left in the game.
The Flames’ passing attack worked well early in the game. Quarterback Magnum Burcham completed 9-of-15 passes for 73 yards in the game.
Halletsville Sacred Heart rushed for 279 yards on 53 attempts. Flames linebacker Jonathan Bryer led the team in tackles with 25. Rawley Jackson had 15, and Burcham had 12.
Faith Academy has a bye week Oct. 24 before their two final games of the year — both at home.
Roberts said early in the year he didn’t like the timing of the bye but has changed his mind now that it’s here.
“It’s a chance to heal up and work on some things,” Roberts said. “It’s a good time to heal up because we’re going to be bruised up and beat up.”
SCORE BY QUARTERS
SH – Dralyton Henneneke 17-yard pass from Hunter Janak (kick missed), 5:19
SH – Dylan Jahn 6-yard run (Jahn two-point run), 8:29
SH – Brian Jansky 1-yard run (two-point pass failed), 3:08
SACRED HEART: First downs, 21; Total yards, 344; Rushes-yards, 53-279; Passing, 65; Interceptions, 0; Comp-att-int, 5-12-0; Fumbles-lost, 0-0; Penalties-yards, 8-55
FAITH ACADEMY: First downs, 7; Total net yards, 132; Rushes-yards, 19-59; Passing, 132; Interceptions, 0; Comp-att-int, 9-15-0; Fumbles-lost, 2-2; Penalties-yards, 1-5
RUSHING – (Faith Academy) Jonathan Bryer 7-30, Rich Coleman 2-10, Magnum Burcham 9-12, Tommy Pelham 1-7
PASSING – (Faith Academy) Magnum Burcham 9-15-73
RECEIVING – (Faith Academy) Rawley Jackson 4-41, Gavin Henderson 2-15, Rich Coleman 3-17
TACKLES — (Faith Academy) Bryer 25, Jackson 15, Burcham 12, Coleman 6, Tommy Pelham 9, Daniel Penner 8, Tristian Wilson 7, Clay Cozby 7, Gavin Henderson 6, Colton Hubbell 5, Kyle Honke 5, Bryson Kennedy 2, Josh Griffin 1