The 2015 season has been one for transcending expectations and program stereotypes for the Hanover Nighthawks football team.
The Hawks achieved another attitude-changing milestone on Friday night — their first win over Littlestown since 2001.
Running backs Jordan Laughman and Justin Barnes smashed and dashed to 100-yard nights, and Kyle Krout lit up the scoreboard through the air as Hanover beat Littlestown 36-14 at Memorial Field.
"It's kind of the same feeling we had after beating Bermudian Springs," Hanover head coach Bill Reichart said. "We were 3-0 going into that game and we weren't getting a lot of respect. People were talking about how we just beat weaker teams. This game and that one were ones that we had circled well before the season started, before we knew where we were going."
Where the Nighthawks (7-0, 5-0 YAIAA II) are going is to recently uncharted territory under their second year head coach.
Now in his 15th year, Littlestown head coach Mike Lippy was an assistant coach for the Bolts when they lost to Hanover in 2001.
"They are aggressive and they play to win, and I respect that" Lippy said. "They have a nice team over there and I think that's one of the best teams they've had since I've been coaching."
Littlestown, which has made critical errors at key times in the previous weeks, hurt itself with a lost fumble on the third play of he game.
Bill Morris recovered the fumble at the Bolts 33.
Hanover, like it did most of the night, leaned heavily on Laughman as he carried the ball on four of five plays before finding paydirt from 11-yards out through the left side of the line.
"I couldn't have done any of the running without the big fellas in front, and then I just ran hard north and south and dos my job and we came out on top," Laughman said.
Laughman also gave credit to the Hanover defense, and that unit shot the Bolts down in the first half, allowing the one score lead to hold up deep into the second quarter.
Another Littlestown fumble set up a 27-yard scoring strike on third-and-19, as Krout hit Morris with 1:31 left in the half.
Littlestown bounced back and scored a minute later on a deep pass from Cody Boyd to Jackson Hornbrook.
Krout hit Hunter Martz for two between the hashes touchdowns in the second half.
Martz is listed on the roster as an offensive lineman.
"Me and Hunter have had a relationship ever since we were 3 off the field," Krout said. "I can close my eyes and still tell you where he i