Video Credits to Pheobe

On homecoming night, the Hillcrest Patriots put on a show for their alumni as the team dominated the Paul Bryant Stampede by a score of 60-13.

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From the start until the end of the game, Hillcrest was the more physical, faster, and more disciplined team. Bryant did all they could and played pretty good considering what they were going up against but Hillcrest is a different monster.

It only took two plays for the Patriot's offense to put their first touchdown on the board. On first and 12 from the Stamped 12-yard line, QB Bryson Kimbrough threw a pass to Kahden Smith for a 12-yard TD. Remember the name Kahden Smith.

Right after scoring the first touchdown, Hillcrest would score again after the defense forced Bryant to fumble the ball at midfield. Four plays later, Kimbrough would throw his second touchdown pass of the game his time a 39-yard pass to senior Jayshon Land.

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Bryant and the Patriots would have a stalemate for the rest of the quarter but the second quarter is when Hillcrest turned on the engines. The first touchdown of the second quarter would be a 20-yard run by Kahden Smith on a jet sweep.

Next, Hillcrest would intercept Edwin Merriweather after AJ Quarles jumped an out route. The next play, Kimbrough threw a 32-yard laser to Jamarcus Prince to extend the Patriot's lead to 27-0.

Bryant would finally get on the board after a long drive that was highlighted by Edwin Merriweather passing the ball against the Patriot defense. The drive ended with  Edwin Merriweather throwing a moon ball to Miles Madden on 4th and 18.

This would be the last time Hillcrest would be stopped until the end of the game. Jayshon Land added yet another touchdown to extend the Patriot's lead to 34-7 with a 51-yard burst right up the middle of the stampede defense. The Land did it again but this time it was in the redzone. Land this time ran for an 11-yard run right up the middle.

The score at halftime was 40-7 but the Patriots were not done flexing their muscles for their homecoming crowd. Kahden Smith does it again, this time he caught a 69-yard touchdown from Kimbrough on the first play of the second half.

This would be the last time the starters on offense would come out into the game. In summary, Kahden Smith would have three touchdowns (2 receiving, one rushing), Land finished with three rushing touchdowns, and Bryson Kimbrough finished with three passing touchdowns.

But the route was not over.

Not only does Hillcrest have good starters but they also have really good backups. The star of the second half was freshman running back Chrisitan Richey. Richey ended the night with two touchdowns in the second half due to no running clock. The first was a nine-yard burst and the second was a four-yard run to help the Patriots put up 14 more points.


The good news for Bryant is that they did score one more touchdown before the game with a Merriweather QB sneak but tonight was all about the Pats. With this win, Hillcrest wins the region championship and improves to 9-0 on the season. The Patriots will look to cap an undefeated season with a senior night win against McAdory.

As for Bryant, this season has been a massive improvement to the program but sadly the team will miss the playoffs. The Stampede will look to win their fourth game of the year as they return home to play Bessemer City.

Hillcrest vs Paul Bryant 10-20-2023

Gallery Credit: JD Zasa and Phoebe

AP's Top 25 in College Basketball 2023

Gallery Credit: Noah Haynes

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