Hunter Berry picked the first quarter of Bolivar’s Friday, Oct. 4, homecoming matchup with Union to make his mark. 

With one touchdown catch already on the night and seconds left in the first quarter, Berry snuck in the backfield as the Liberator offense lined up just yards from the goal. Quarterback Hayden Burks ducked out, drawing attention from defenders as running back Bo Banner weaved through the line of scrimmage and into the end zone. Banner came open, and Berry made the throw to Banner to complete the reverse play touchdown.

Behind Berry, Burks, Banner, Blade Hancock and Eathen Dinwiddie, Bolivar charged to a 60-14 homecoming win. The Liberators are 6-0 on the season. 

“Our kids played extremely well,” Bolivar coach Glen Johnson said after the game. “You never know with homecoming and all the distractions that are built in. We worked on that.”

The win proved satisfying, Johnson said. 

“That’s a big one,” he said. 

Berry’s first touchdown play on the night came with 6:21 left in the quarter, hauling in a pass from Burks to put the Liberators up 7-0.

After forcing a Union punt, the Liberators looked to pick up a second score, this time on a Dinwiddie run, but the play was called back by officials, ruling that Dinwiddie had fumbled before reaching the end zone. Union took over at the 20 yard line, and just as momentum seemed to shift to the visiting team, Hancock darted into the backfield, forcing a fumble from a Union ball carrier, recovered by Drayton Huchteman. The turnover set up Berry and Banner’s trick play to give the Liberators a 14-0 lead after the first quarter. 

An early series in the second quarter saw Bolivar make a goal line stand to hold Union scoreless. Dinwiddie didn’t wait long to drive home Bolivar’s dominance, exploding for a 76-yard run to the end zone. A missed extra point gave the Liberators a 20-0 lead with 4:24 left in the first half. 

As time dwindled, two big runs saw Union score its first touchdown, leaving less than a minute on the clock. That was enough for Hancock, who took a handoff from Burks to the end zone on the next play to give Bolivar a 26-7 lead at halftime. 

Bolivar continued its dominance through the second half, with Dinwiddie and Hancock each earning second touchdowns on the night. Following another Union score, Bolivar led 40-14 by the end of the third quarter.

Burks added 6 points on a keeper into the end zone to open the fourth quarter and give his team a 46-14 advantage. Andrew Bunn and Dylan Hall also had touchdowns before the game ended. 

Bolivar next faces Clinton at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11, in Clinton. See more photos and a preview of the game in the Wednesday, Oct. 9, issue of the BH-FP.

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