Newly led Knights football takes down Bishop Sycamore 38-0


photo via Twitter

After last year’s undefeated season, the Hoban Knights football team looks to continue the winning tradition—despite graduating a highly talented senior class. 


For four years, fans who had grown accustomed to seeing the familiar face of Shane Hamm leading the high-powered offense were left to wonder who would fill this pivotal role after his graduation. Further departures from the offense included running back Victor Dawson and wide receivers Kharion Davis and Brayden Fox. To fill these vacancies, coach Tim Tyrell has turned to junior transfer Jayvian Crable to lead from the backfield and make connections with junior Lamar Sperling and seniors Shawn Parnell and Tyson Grimm—all of whom look to become key playmakers. 


However, the major concern coming into this season was not on the offense, but rather the defense which saw many of the starters graduate.


The highly-rated defense—which produced five shutouts last season—would be going into battle this year without four-star Darryl Peterson, Chances Carter-Hill and the terrifying duo of Luke Bauer and Damon Ollison II.


With the loss of a talented senior class and facing one of the toughest schedules in Ohio, the Knights will have their work cut out for them on their journey to another state championship.


And that journey began last Thursday night against Bishop Sycamore at Dowed Field.


Coming from Columbus, the Centurions of Bishop Sycamore looked to start their season in the win column, as they finished the 2020 season going 0-6.


Looks can be deceiving, as the Centurions’ schedule last season featured Massillon, St. Edwards, St. Ignatius and IMG Academy. This year, they face a similar challenge as their strength of schedule ranks fourth in the country according to MaxPreps. 


The long-awaited return of fans at Dowed Field did not disappoint, as the Knights showcased their defensive strength and offensive resilience to defeat the Centurions 38-0.


Both defenses took control of the game early in the first quarter. Junior Jason Martin III picked up a sack on Bishop Sycamore’s second drive. A few plays later, sophomore Tysen Campbell picked off the Centurions quarterback. 


Despite the early woes on offense during the first half, the Knights defense continued to dominate, putting constant pressure on both of Bishop Sycamore’s quarterbacks Trillian Harris and Jailen Knight


On the punt by Bishop Sycamore to end the first quarter, sophomore Jordan Pritchard-Swell’s block gave the Knights perfect field position in the second and jump-started the offense.


Senior Charlie Durkin would make a field goal on their first drive of the quarter, followed by junior quarterback Javian Crable finding senior Shawn Parnell for a 31-yard touchdown to give the Knights a quick 10-0 lead. After giving up a long pass, the Knights defense stuffed Bishop Sycamore inside their own 10 yard line for a momentum-killing stop. At the end of the first half, the Knights lead Bishop Sycamore 10-0. 


The monument the Knights created on both sides of the ball carried into the second half, as the defense stood strong while Sperling would reign terror on the offensive side, breaking off a long run and then punch in a 5-yard touchdown. 


The fourth quarter the Knights offensive and defensive line took the game to a new level. 


Sperling would add two more touchdowns to his already impressive day, as he would finish his night with 135 rushing yards and three touchdowns to his name. 


To put the nail in the coffin, Campbell would come up with another interception, leading the Knights offense to capitalize and help get Sperling his third touchdown. The Knights would finish the night with one last touchdown run from sophomore Caleb Jones.


Crable would finish the night going an efficient 7-for-11 for 107 yards and a touchdown.


However, Crable was not able to finish the game on the field, as he was taken out early in the fourth quarter after a nasty hit that resulted in a personal foul on the Centurions.


The Knights will face their biggest challenge of the year next Friday, as they square off against the 11th ranked team in the country, Bergen Catholic at Dowed Field.