Hoke County falls to 2-3 after loss to Scotland County

#24 Jairo Ortiz breaks a run late in the game for Hoke County. The Bucks fell 36-13 to Scotland County in the Sandhills Conference opener. The Bucks are now 2-3 on the season and will play at Lee County this Friday night in Sanford. 

Hoke County wasn’t able to make it two years in a row over Scotland County. The Bucks fell to the Scots, 36-13, last Friday, falling to 2-3 on the season and 0-1 in Sandhills Conference play.  Scotland moved to 5-0 on the year, 1-0 in conference.

Hoke beat Scotland County last season, 52-35, ending a 12-year losing streak to the Scots. Friday brought back old, bad memories, as Scotland jumped out to a 22-0 halftime lead and never looked back.

Zay Jones led the way for Scotland County, scoring the game’s first two touchdowns on short runs. He finished with 19 rushes for 132 yards and added a third rushing score later in the game. The Scots added a 30yard touchdown pass from Ji’san McPhatter to Quantavius Everette and an 85-yard kick return touchdown by Corheim Hasty. 

Quarterback Brandon Saunders led the way for Hoke County, throwing for one touchdown and rushing for another. He found Tre’Jan Williams for a 65-yard score in the third quarter to put the Bucks on the board, then ran 22 yards for a touchdown in the fourth.

Saunders was 15-of-21 passing for 184 yards. He also led the team in rushing with 11 carries for 42 yards.  Williams had four catches for 72 yards to lead the team’s pass catchers.

Hoke was led on defense by sophomore Joshua Ferrell, who had a team-high 13 tackles and two forced. He also added a tackle for loss. Dexter Foster had three tackles for loss, half a sack and seven overall stops. Franajai Ransom had two sacks.

Hoke County will attempt to even its record with another county matchup this week, heading to Lee County. The Yellow Jackets are 3-2 on the year but dropped their conference opener to Union Pines last week.

Hoke has lost all five matchups to Lee County since the two schools became conference rivals.