Fort Hamilton 38 Boys High 24
After losing their first two games of the season to Clinton and South Shore by only two points, the 0-2 Fort Hamilton Tigers were ready for their first win of the season, especially at their 2016 Homecoming Game. Just as hungry for a win, the also winless 0-2 Boys High Kangaroos were prepared to play role of spoiler on the Tigers’ big day.
Fort Hamilton got on the scoreboard first with a four-yard keeper by quarterback Seba Nekhet to put Fort Hamilton up 8-0 at the end of the first quarter. Starting the second quarter, the Tiger defense pushed Boys High back to the 25-yard line on fourth down, which eventually set up Nekhet’s second score of the game on a 15-yard run to put Fort Hamilton ahead 16-0 by mid quarter.
After two scores by the Tigers, Boys High quarterback Christophe Julmus put the running game into high gear to march downfield as the Kangaroos’ top running back, Bryce Harding, led his team to their first score with a two-yard line plunge that cut the Tigers’ lead to 16-8.
The Boys High rally carried over to their defense, forcing Fort Hamilton to punt, which gave the Kangaroos their second scoring opportunity. A short Fort Hamilton kick caught the punt team flatfooted on coverage that allowed Rondell Russell to scoop the ball on a short hop for a 45-yard untouched scamper down the sideline to tie the game, 16-16 before the half.
The Tigers opened the second half with a sustained scoring drive as Troy Booker finished with a 20-yard run to reclaim the lead at 24-16 early in the quarter. In turn, Boys High came right back to tie the game at 24-24 on another Bryce Harding end zone plunge that concluded the third quarter.
Mid-way in the fourth quarter, the Tigers pulled away from Boys High with a 50-yard broken field run by Seba Nekhet to put Fort Hamilton ahead 32-24. Immediately following the Tigers’ score, the defense stepped up to stop the Kangaroos at their own 40-yard line as Isaiah Brooks recovered a fumble to set up Booker’s 20-yard touchdown run for the final score of the game, 38-24.
The Tiger defense continued to protect the lead with an interception by Arion Tenn at the five-yard line with 2:25 left in the game, which essentially shut down Boys High’s last chance to score.
Gaining possession deep in their own territory and ahead by two touchdowns, Fort Hamilton’s Ricky Linton was then called upon to keep ball possession on the ground to run out the clock, taking the Tigers all the way to midfield until the final whistle.
Looking back on the win, Nekhet — who scored three touchdowns and ran for 188 yards on 15 attempts — had a career day at quarterback. Running the team out of a successful option offense, he stated, “Most of our plays were options. I saw the read and took it.”
Also compiling a career day, running back Booker had two touchdowns and 216 yards on 20 attempts. He stated, “We had a lot of people come out to see us today and we had to show them that we could win. We felt we didn’t come out strong enough in the first half and we told ourselves that we had to come out stronger in the second half.”
This Sunday, October 2, the 1-2 Tigers will host the 2-1 Susan Wagner Falcons from Staten Island for Fort Hamilton’s third home game of the season.