Milford stays undefeated in 44-25 win

 

MILFORD — If Will Kimmel threw the ball in the first half, his receivers caught it.

The Milford High senior quarterback was perfect on all seven attempts in the first half on his way to a four-touchdown game.

Kimmel tossed three touchdowns and rushed for another as the Buccaneers downed Laurel 44-25 on Friday night in a Henlopen Conference Southern Division contest. Milford remained unbeaten and improved to 7-0 overall, 3-0 in the Henlopen South.

Senior Brion Murray caught a pair of touchdown passes in the first half while junior Marcus Correa added a touchdown catch in the second half.

“I trust them to come down with everything,” Kimmel said. “Brion and Marcus are great receivers. Every time I throw the ball I know they can catch it.”

The Buccaneers got the ground game more involved in the second half.

Dominyc Hovington scored from seven yards out in the third quarter while Tymire Riddick added a 3-yard touchdown late in the fourth quarter.

Kimmel threw the ball less in the second half but still finished the night 9-of-11 with 179 passing yards. Murray had five of those receptions for 121 yards.

“When Kimmel is clicking our receivers start clicking,” Murray said. “When everyone is clicking, we’re an unbeatable machine on offense.”

Milford trailed twice in the first half before scoring 26 unanswered points to take control.

The Buccaneers were forced to punt after six rushing attempts on the first drive of the game. After that, they went to the air with great success.

Laurel took a 7-0 lead on a 25-yard rush by Yolnex Gustin but Milford had an instant response. Kimmel hit Murray for seven yards on the first play of the next drive then beat the Laurel defense over the top on a 55-yard bomb to Murray for a touchdown on the next play.

Gustin scored another 25-yard rushing touchdown to give Laurel a brief advantage again before Kimmel connected with Murray for a 6-yard touchdown.

Kimmel scored on a quarterback sneak to put Milford on top 24-13 at halftime. That touchdown was set up by a 13-yard pass to Murray and a 21-yard completion to Correa to convert on a fourth down attempt.

“We saw it last week teams load the box,” said Milford coach Shaun Strickland. “We’re blessed with two great receivers and we trust them on the outside. If that’s what teams will do, we’ll continue to throw and use that to our advantage.”

Laurel (2-2 Henlopen South, 3-4 overall) did not go quietly though.

Quarterback Perez Nichols cut into Milford’s lead with a 42-yard rushing touchdown with 8:01 left in the game. The Bulldogs got another touchdown a few minutes later when Antonio Johnson picked up a fumble and scampered 39 yards for a score.

It drew Laurel within 36-25 with 6:10 remaining, but the Buccaneers sealed it with an 11-play drive that covered 80 yards. It ended with Riddick’s touchdown with 44 seconds left in the fourth quarter.

“We knew it was going to be a fight and it was exactly that,” Strickland said. “We came and finished four quarters so I’m very pleased with that.”

 

Reach staff writer Tim Mastro at tmastro@newszap.com

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