Hendersonville was able to get a victory at Memorial Stadium in the 1st round of the TSSAA class 6A playoffs be defeating Blackman 30-21. The Blaze ended the COMMANDOS season a year ago in the 2nd round of the playoffs, but after falling behind in the 2nd half, HHS would be able to beat the Blaze this year by scoring on back to back possessions. #8 Brent Rowe would lead the way for the COMMANDOS with 178 yards rushing, 26 yards receiving, 5 tackles, 2 forced fumbles, 1 fumble recovery, and 1 pass break up.
Blackman would begin the game with an impressive drive that picked up 4 of their 10 1st downs for the game and ended with a 1 yard TD run putting HHS down 0-7 fast. Hendersonville would answer with a 13 play 67 yard drive that also ended with a score. 1st down runs by #10 Ellis Ellis and Rowe would get the drive going before Ellis scored the COMMANDOS first TD with a 5 yard run to tie the game at 7. Blackman would gain a 1st down on the ground and one threw the air before Rowe would tip a pass attempt that #5 Nevin DeGraaf would intercept. Penalties would cause Hendersonville to go backwards following the turnover as they would punt after 3 plays. On the punt return by the Blaze, Rowe would force a fumble that he would recover to give HHS the ball back. The COMMANDOS again couldn’t capitalize off the turnover as they would punt after 3 plays, but BHS would return the punt after 3 plays. Runs by Ellis, Rowe, #11 Luke Manning, and #13 Jack Brown would get HHS deep into Blaze territory and they would call on #27 Andrew Martin to hit a 26 yard field goal near the end of the 1st half, and the teams would break with HHS leading 10-7.
Hendersonville would receive the 2nd half kickoff and Ellis would pick up a 1st down, but the COMMANDOS would turn the ball over on downs after getting sacked on 4th down. The Blaze would march down the field and regain the lead with a 10 yard touchdown pass to make the score 10-14. Hendersonville would answer quickly as Rowe would pick up a 1st down before Manning would find Ellis for a 55 yard TD pass. After missing the PAT, HHS would lead 16-14. Rowe would force his 2nd fumble on the ensuing BHS possession and #26 Stevin Mack would recover near the end of the 3rd quarter. Rowe would march the ball down the field following the fumble picking up three 1st downs for the COMMANDOS before Manning would end the drive with a 5 yard touchdown run as HHS extended their lead to 23-14. On the 3rd play of the next possession, Blackman would strike with an 85 yard TD pass to pull back within 2 points. Runs by Manning and Rowe would gain COMMANDO 1stdowns and then Ellis would score again, this time with a 15 yard TD run. With the score 30-21, Blackman would pick up a 1stdown through the air and then Ellis would end their drive by intercepting a pass. Rowe would run the ball and run the clock out allowing HHS to claim a 1st round victory.
Hendersonville will move on the 2nd round of the class 6A playoffs and their opponent will be the Riverdale Warriors who knocked out Wilson Central 40-0. The 2nd round game will be next Friday night at Memorial Stadium with kickoff set for 7:00.