Field goal somewhat surprising for Farrell
HERSHEY — Farrell’s Brian Hilton Jr. was not having the best experience during the PIAA Class 1A championship Thursday at Hersheypark Stadium.
Early in the fourth quarter, Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic’s Cameron Maloney blocked his punt to set up a Marauders touchdown that tied the game. Shortly after that, Hilton dropped a 50-yard pass from Raymond Raver Jr. in the end zone that was in his hands before he hit the ground with 5:58 left.
But things quickly turned around in overtime.
Hilton blocked Deven Wyandt’s 23-yard field goal before making a 22-yard field goal himself to win the state title, 10-7.
The kick, Hilton’s first field goal attempt in his life and the first attempted field goal by Farrell in as long as coach Anthony Pegues could remember, was sky high and nearly was blown back into the end zone before it went through the uprights by wind gusts close to 30 miles per hour.
“I gave it all I had,” Hilton said. “I thought it might come back out with that wind. I got a little nervous, but when it went through, I felt real good.”
Pegues said he never imagined winning the state championship on a field goal.
“My coaches told me I might have to kick a field goal to win this, and I said, ‘no way, I’ll never kick a field goal,'” Pegues said. “They told me over the headset, ‘kick the field goal,’ so I figured why not? We kick it, and we win the game.”
For Hilton, the kick was sweet redemption after he blamed himself for the blocked punt.
“I got hit earlier in the game on my hip, so it was taking me longer to get the punt off,” Hilton Jr. said. “When I went to kick it, they were right there.”
Now the senior can remember his final play in a high school uniform won a state championship.
“It feels so good,” Pegues said. “It was never about me. It is about these kids. They put in the time and the effort, and this championship is all about them.”