Farmington Hills Harrison's John Herrington honored

Farmington Press | Published September 9, 2017

 Farmington Hills Harrison's Maverick Hansen hits the Rochester Hills Stoney Creek quarterback Sept. 8 at home. The Hawks won 47-8.

Farmington Hills Harrison's Maverick Hansen hits the Rochester Hills Stoney Creek quarterback Sept. 8 at home. The Hawks won 47-8.

Photo by Donna Agusti

Farmington Hills — Farmington Hills Harrison took care of business beating Rochester Hills Stoney Creek 47-8 Sept. 8 in its home opener.

The night began with plenty of emotion as longtime Hawks coach John Herrington was honored in a pregame ceremony in which the field was officially named the Herrington Athletic Complex.

In a brief speech, Herrington thanked everyone for coming out, including Harrison alumni and former players from the 1970s who were also honored in a halftime ceremony.

“I’ve been here since the first brick was laid,” Herrington said. “I’m really going to miss this place when it’s gone, but it will be nice to always have my name here.”

With the win against Stoney Creek, Herrington is four wins away from having the most victories in the state of Michigan. He is Harrison's only coach, starting in 1970. In that time, the Hawks have won 13 state championships, which is the most by any program.

While the pregame spotlight was on Herrington, the focus for him was on the game against Stoney Creek.

The Hawks started off with the ball, quickly moving down the field and scoring on their first possession as running back Roderick Heard took it 17 yards for his first of three touchdowns on the night.

His second touchdown came late in the first quarter after he broke away from the Cougars defense and ran 14 yards to give the Hawks a 14-0 lead.

“We ran the ball a lot better this week. Heard ran really well and had a good game on the offensive side,” Herrington said.

Running back Joe Stephens also got into the action with a 68-yard touchdown run, giving the Hawks a 20-0 lead after a two-point conversion failed.

Harrison would keep its foot on the gas in the first half scoring twice more. Running back Ben Williams scampered 11 yards for the touchdown and a 27-0 lead.

Not even two minutes later, quarterback Noah Hendricks found tight end Ovie Oghoufo for 24 yards and the score, giving the Hawks a 34-0 lead at the break.

“I feel like everything just came natural for us this week,” Oghoufo said. “The preparation the coaches put us through in practice really helped us on the field tonight.”

In the second half, the Hawks defense would pick up right where they left off as linebacker Jerrin Harvey grabbed an interception less than 40 seconds into the third quarter.

After the Harrison offense turned the ball over on downs, the defense gave the ball right back when defensive back Nik Cotton intercepted a pass by the Cougars at the 41-yard line.

The Hawks offense would waste no time getting down the field as Oghoufo ran it 51 yards to set up first and goal giving Heard the opportunity to find the end zone once again after catching an 8-yard pass from Hendricks. That made it 40-0 midway through the third quarter.

It wasn’t until the end of the third quarter the Cougars were finally able to get on the board after quarterback Peyton Youngblood found running back Jordan Tungate for 18 yards and the score.

“Playing three weeks on the road and having to come here is just tough,” Cougars coach Bob Lantzy said. “They’re a real fast and physical team, and they just got the best of us tonight.”

The Hawks would find the end zone one more time as running back Javier Beeler ran it in from 4 yards out to make the score 47-8 late in the fourth quarter.