The Salisbury Hornets are 2-AA state football champs again after defeating St. Paul’s 42-14 at Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh on Thursday night.
The Hornets struck early, leading 14-0 before the Bulldogs tied the game just seconds into the second quarter. The Hornets then scored two more times to go up 28-14 at the half.
Salisbury quarterback Vance Honeycutt ran for three Hornet scores in the first half. Sophomore running back JyMikaah Wells also scored, running in from the 17 yard line to put the Hornets back in front 21-14 before Honeycutt scored to make it 28-14.
Both teams were perfect in the red zone in the first half.
After the break, the Bulldogs drove to the Hornet 1 in the third quarter, but the Hornet defense made a key stop on fourth down to keep St. Paul’s out of the end zone. SHS then began a 7-play drive at the 1 that ended with a score when Honeycutt scampered in for his fourth TD. That put Salisbury up 35-14 with less than two minutes to go in the 3rd quarter.
On the next possession with 10:28 left in the game, Honeycutt found Jalon Walker for a 25-yard TD reception. SHS went up 42-17 and that ended up being the final score. With 1:39 to go, coach Brian Hinson got the traditional Gatorade shower on the sidelines.
The 9-2 Hornets made it to the title game after beating North Davidson in a thriller last week by a score of 24-21. The Thursday night title win was also the 7th straight for Salisbury.
The defensive player of the game for the Hornets was lineman Nick Hall, while JyMikaah Wells was named offensive player of the game. Honeycutt was named game MVP.
Honeycutt was named the Memories Radio Player of the Game. Honeycutt was 8 for 12 passing for 105 yards and one touchdown, while rushing on 17 carries for 110 yards and four touchdowns.
Wells carried the ball 22 times for 144 yards and a touchdown. The Hornets stacked up 395 offensive yards against the Bulldogs.
Salisbury’s last state championship came eleven years ago in 2010 when the Joe Pinyan led Hornets blanked Northeastern 30-0. Salisbury, or Boyden High at the time, also won state championships in 1955 and 1957 under Coach Bill Ludwig.