MARIETTA -- A balanced attack on offense and a stifling defensive effort propelled Kell to its third straight win -- a 45-23 victory Friday at Wheeler.

The Longhorns (4-3, 3-2) piled up 491 yards of total offense and held the Wildcats (1-7, 1-5) to 128.

“I have been challenging our offense, and I think we have been really close to having a breakthrough night, but we just couldn't put all the pieces of the puzzle together," Kell coach Brett Sloan said. "I feel like we started to do that tonight. I am really happy for them.”

Davion Hampton led the air attack by going 11-for-15 for 212 yards and three touchdowns. Hampton also chipped in 51 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries.

Sloan said he was happy to see the junior do it all Friday.

“I thought this was his most complete game,” Sloan said. “I was really proud of the way he managed the game tonight. There is no doubt he can make big plays, but he managed the game. We just talk about on offense that you just have to drive the car, and he tonight. He drove the car.”

Ayden Jackson led all receivers with three receptions for 104 yards and two touchdowns, and Charles McCartherens added a 57-yard touchdown.

“I am happy for those receivers," Sloan said. "The receivers and Davion have been waiting for a breakout night, and they had it tonight."

Ryan Barrett led all rushers with 102 yards on seven carries, including a 63-yard touchdown. TJ Felix added 97 yards on 17 carries as the Longhorns rushed for 279 yards.

The Kell defense allowed 3 rushing yards and 38 total yards of offense in the first half, holding Wheeler to two first downs.

“Obviously, we played good defense,” Sloan said. “We play very aggressive. That is something that (defensive coordinator Andy Szatkoswki) does a good job of instilling in them, and they buy into it. We play pretty well on defense when we are dialed in and doing what we are supposed to be doing.”

Wheeler did not go wild scoring and gaining yards in the second half, but Sloan said the defensive unit has some things to work on moving forward.

“We slacked off a little in the second half, and we have to play better in the second half,” Sloan said. “These kids keep hanging together. They have been through some tough injuries. They have been through some things that would send some other teams packing, and they haven't done that.”

Kell used a methodical 13-play drive on its first drive of the game to secure the first points on a 28-yard field goal from Christian Hogg with 5:39 to play in the first quarter. Following an interception by Tayvon Price on the Wildcats' next drive, Hampton connected with Jackson for a 22-yard touchdown through the air five plays later.

Hampton then rushed in from 4 yards out for a 17-0 Kell lead with 9:40 to play in the first half.

It looked like the rout was on when McCartherens caught a pass from Hampton and went 57 yards for a touchdown and a 23-0 Longhorns lead. However, Coryell Dorrough returned the ensuing kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown to cut the Kell lead to 23-7.

The Longhorns led 34-7 at the half.

Alexander Courtney scored on a 5-yard rushing touchdown, and Zach Adkins hit a 45-yard field goal to cut the Kell lead to 42-16 by the end of the third quarter. Jordan McInnis scored the final points of the game on a 6-yard touchdown run for the 45-23 final as Kell ran the remaining 3:06 off the clock to preserve the win.


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