Hounds win first game of season

Freedom Newspapers

WEATHERFORD, Okla. — Derrick Hunter made a big splash in his return to action Saturday night.

Eastern New Mexico University’s senior wide receiver caught four passes for 78 yards and two touchdowns as the Greyhounds blanked Southwestern Oklahoma 28-0 in a Lone Star Conference crossover game.

Sophomore quarterback Michael Benton rushed for 115 yards and a touchdown and completed 7-of-9 passes for 113 yards, including scoring tosses to Hunter of 25 yards in the second quarter and 11 in the third, as the Hounds won for the first time in three games.

Meantime, the ENMU defense held the Bulldogs (0-3) to 204 total yards and 12 first downs.

Hunter, who had missed the team’s first two games with a knee injury, became the Hounds’ all-time leader in career receiving yardage with 2,170. He surpassed Steve Johnson (1983-84), who had 2,104 yards at the school.

Hunter now has 120 catches in his career and is six away from the school mark of 126, set by Robert Griggs (1985-86, 88-89).

Eastern drove 71 yards in 12 plays to take the lead on its second possession of the game. Benton capped the march with an 18-yard scamper into the end zone with 2:22 left in the period.

After taking over following a touchback on a punt, the Hounds went 80 yards in nine plays. Benton had completions of 31 yards to Hunter and 10 to Tristan Selmon, then finished it with his first TD strike to Hunter, who caught the floating pass in the left corner of the end zone.

The third score was set up when outside linebacker Tim Ojeda deflected a pass in the flat to sophomore defensive end Jorge Melendez, who brought it back 58 yards to the Southwestern 7. On third-and-goal, Benton threw high into the left corner and Hunter brought the ball down just inside the sideline for the touchdown.

Eastern held the Bulldogs on downs at the ENMU 25 with about five minutes left in the game and backup QB Rocky Hartline directed the team on a seven-play touchdown drive that ended with senior fullback Sukora Cooper’s 19-yard touchdown run with 1:41 remaining.

The Hounds limited Southwestern to 70 yards net on the ground, getting quarterback sacks from Ojeda and sophomore linebacker Royal Bell.