In the world of high school football, Sam Rogers is a man among boys.
Only 5-11 and 200 pounds, what Rogers may lack in height he more than makes up for in skill, lower body strength, agility, and, most importantly for the Hanover Hawks, experience.
Only a junior, Rogers started his 26th game at quarterback for Hanover last night, leading the Hawks offense on five consecutive touchdown drives to help cement an opening night 42-14 victory over rival Patrick Henry.
Patrick Henry actually began the game with a well-executed, time-consuming drive of over eight minutes. But after converting three times on third down during the drive, they failed to convert on a fourth down from the Hanover 16 and ended the drive empty-handed on the scoreboard.
Rogers took it from there.
In a nine-minute span of the second quarter, he led the Hawks down the field four times, mixing strong running with timely passing. He and new tailback L.J. Jones each scored two rushing touchdowns, giving Hanover a comfortable 28-0 halftime lead.
After Rogers scored his third TD of the night early in the third quarter, his night was done. Andrew Knizner finished the game at quarterback, scoring his own touchdown early in the fourth.
Both of Patrick Henry's touchdowns came in the fourth quarter, with new QB Khalil Mock connecting on a 71-yard bomb to wideout Raymon Minor. Then, after a Hanover turnover deep in their own territory, Mock found Minor in the left corner of the end zone for a seven-yard touchdown pass, a play that featured Minor's athleticism as he jumped over his defender to grab the ball in one-on-one coverage.
Hanover has now won six straight against Patrick Henry and lead the overall series 6-4. Patrick Henry starts 0-1 for the fifth straight year.
NEXT WEEK: Hanover opens its home schedule against J.R. Tucker, who came back from a 21-7 deficit to beat Glen Allen 36-21, while Patrick Henry must travel to face an Atlee Raider squad coming off a rout of Deep Run, 55-14. Patrick Henry/Atlee will be heard Friday night at 6:30 on WHAN, 102.9 FM, 1430 AM, and on the internet HERE at HanoverCountySports.org!
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