Hilton, NY ---- The Hilton Cadets faced off against the Pittsford Panthers in the opening week of Section V football. Cadets Senior running back/wide receiver Robert Lowry had three huge rushing touchdowns to give the Cadets a 21-6 victory.
Hilton gets the victory in their return to class Double-A football in 2023. Hilton spent a brief single season stint in Single-A, winning a sectional title and being state semi-finalists in the Class-A playoffs. Hilton wasted no time showing their intentions this season with Senior Robert Lowry taking the first play from scrimmage 80 yards to the end zone.
Lowry on his first play touchdown: "It feels great, I'm just happy to back in Double-A, I watched us lose in the sectional playoffs when I got pulled up in 10th grade so it's just great to be back in Double-A."
The first half would see both defenses dominate from that point forward as neither offense could find the red zone. Hilton linebackers Braydon Pike (Junior), John DiBattisto (Junior) and Mason Nolan (Senior) would fly around the field shutting down the Pittsford run game. Both sides struggle with penalties throughout the first half with both sides picking up multiple holding and false start infractions.
Pittsford's passing game was shut down in the first half because of the impressive coverage and tackling of the Hilton secondary. Senior Luke Lockhart was all over the field making plays defensively in the first half, between breaking up passes and making crucial tackles, the third year starter showed his experience and ability to make a big impact.
The story of the first half was the duel in the trenches between Hilton and Pittsford. The contest was a deadlock outside of Robert Lowry's massive touchdown run.
Lowry on keeping the offense composed even when things are difficult "you got to stay disciplined, and we have to prevent ourselves from falling apart."
The second half saw a very similar story. Hilton's first driving after forcing a Pittsford punt would produce a 78-yard touchdown run from Lowry in similar fashion to his first. Lowry's big play abilities proved to be the difference in this contest.
Pittsford's offense would find some life with an up tempo triple I formation, which a hasty ground and pound drive would see Sophomore Jax Bernas find the end zone for Pittsford. That drive would be the only points produced from Pittsford.
Hilton would have two starts suffer cramps, tight end/defensive end Conner Belllanca, alongside wide receiver/safety Brady Quill. Bellanca would have a more serious case and not return in the second half after leaving the game early in the third, while Quill would return moments after exciting.
Lowry on his teammates toughness "We have to stay tough and disciplined and we just have to push through."
The game would be put away after Hilton capitalized on great field position late in the third quarter. They would start the drive on Pittsford's 31 yard line after a poor punt. A few plays later Lowry would sneak by two defenders with a shifty move and find the end zone for his third touchdown of the night.
The Hilton Cadets would stand tall defensively in the fourth quarter despite strong efforts from the Pittsford offense and would seal an impressive 21-6 victory over the Pittsford Panthers. While Hilton still has work to do, to improve for the rest of their tough 2023 schedule, it was a good first impression being back in Double-A.