ROYAL CITY — It was lights out for the halftime fireworks show.
And Royal was lights out on the field to match.
Alonso Hernandez scored four total touchdowns and top-ranked Royal stayed perfect against Warden 56-0.
“We just try to get better,” he said. “Even if we’re winning by a lot, we still give it 100 percent until the last whistle blows, until the clock hits zero. So, we stay poised and just keep playing.”
Warden hung around during the first 12 minutes, forcing a turnover on downs and recovering a Sawyer Jenks fumble in the end zone. However, Warden could not consistently move the ball on offense against a Royal defensive unit that has given up 24 points all season.
Zach Richins attempted to provide a lift, snaring a one-handed catch in the back of the end zone during the fourth quarter, but neither of his feet fell in bounds.
Conversely, Royal leaned on Hernandez early before the field opened up in the second quarter.
Hernandez caught a 24-yard touchdown pass from Jenks on the Knights’ opening drive and then rattled off a trio of rushing touchdowns from nine, 62 and six yards out.
“We started off kind of slow, but we fixed some stuff and we got the running game going again so that’s our strength,” Hernandez said. “If we start off slow, we always pick it up.”
The Knights certainly picked things up during their 35-point second quarter.
Hernandez began the blitzkrieg with a 62-yard touchdown gallop, cutting back against the grain, and another 6-yard bruiser. Jenks stabilized the passing game with a 21-yard scoring strike to Gage Christensen, fooling the Warden defense with a fake screen.
Carter Dorsing caught Jenks’ third touchdown pass and Lorenzo Myrick ended the first half by taking a screen 41 yards for a touchdown.
A quick 35 points over 12 minutes to put the game out of reach and set up a running clock for the entire second half — an outburst that has become standard for Royal.
“They lined up kind of differently and we just talked about and the line — they picked it up and we were good from there,” Hernandez said.
R — 14 35 7 0 56
W — 0 0 0 0 0
Highlights: Alonso Hernandez 153 rushing yards, 24 receiving yards, 4 total TDs; Sawyer Jenks 169 passing yards, 4 passing TDs