Special to the Register
Berea came up short in its upset bid against Hazard Friday on the road.
The defending state champion Bulldogs moved on to the second round of the Class A Playoffs with a 62-18 win over the Pirates (2-9).
The Bulldogs (7-3) jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter on the strength of a 58-yard touchdown reception and a 77-yard run by Brandon Jones.
The Bulldogs added two more touchdowns in the second quarter to take a 27-0 lead at halftime. The first score came on a on a 1-yard Kody Arnett run with 9:29 to go in the half. After the Pirates’ next possession stalled, a bad snap over the punter’s head set up the Bulldogs’ next score — a 14-yard run by Jordan Olinger.
Berea had a scoring opportunity late in the half after picking up a botched punt return by Hazard. However, the drive ended with 1 second on the clock.
Hazard increased its lead to 34-0 in the third quarter on a 5-yard touchdown pass to Jarrod Combs. The lead then moved to 41-0 after Brandon Jones broke off his second 77-yard run with 6:34 left in the quarter.
Berea finally got on the board on a 45-yard sweep by Devin Hester. The two-point conversion failed making it 41-6 mid-way through the third quarter.
Hazard erased that score 36 seconds later as Nathan Higgins scored on a 9-yard run following an onside kick by the Pirates.
Early in the fourth quarter, Zach Cunningham finished off a long, sustained drive by the Pirates, scoring on a 5-yard run up the middle. The point after attempt was missed, making the score 48-12.
Hazard’s final score came on a Cade Fletcher 7-yard run to make it 55-12.