The 16 Biglerville seniors jogged around their home field after Friday's game while "Sweet Child O' Mine" by Guns N' Roses blared over the loudspeaker.
These Canners took part in a long senior day tradition and did so not only as victors in their final home game, but with the emotions of winning what Colton Sentz and Ben Hurda called the biggest game of their careers.
"It was the best atmosphere and probably the win that meant the most," Sentz said. "This was do or die, all of our goals this season rode on this game. Our goals were a league title, or at least a piece of it, playoffs and to go farther. If we didn't win here, there wasn't much chance of getting in (to the playoffs) or a league title."
Sentz ran for 179 yards and three touchdowns, and Hurda ran for a touchdown of his own in Biglerville's (6-3, 5-1 YAIAA Division III) 42-21 win against previously undefeated Hanover (8-1, 5-1).
"This is the first time this season that I've seen us play four quarters together, everyone together," Biglerville coach Alex Ramos said. "I mean, they were selling out for each other. Everything wasn't perfect tonight but we were very selfless tonight, it was about the team, it wasn't about any individual. That's the first time I've seen that across the board. Even the guys on the sideline were jacked up and excited about what was going on."
The Canners' first touchdown of the game, a 3-yard plunge by Hurda, created the first deficit Hanover faced all season, and the Nighthawks never regained the lead. They trailed 21-6 at halftime, and never got closer than seven points behind in a back-and-forth second half.
"It was unchartered territory for us," Hanover coach Bill Reichart said. "We drew upon experiences from, unfortunately, years past. From a coaching perspective, though, we are going to be playing an 11th game. We took care of that last week, so this is experience we can draw from going forward. Hopefully we don't have to, but if we are behind we at least know how to play."
The Nighthawks and Canners are now tied atop Division III with the Bermudian Springs Eagles, the defending division champion that returned just one starter from last year's team and started the season 0-4 before reeling off five straight wins. Hanover will host rival Delone Catholic next week, while Biglerville heads to face Bermudian Springs in a game that will eliminate one team from title contention.
"Tomorrow morning, we've got to go to work," Ramos said about next week's game. "They're on fire. They're starting to figure things. You might be young Week 1, 2 or 3, but by Week 10, you're not young anymore. It's gonna be a great game over there."
Han — Bill Morris 30 pass from Kyle Krout (run failed), 6:38.
Big — Ben Hurda 3 run (Colton Sentz kick), 2:31.
Big — Sentz 23 run (Sentz kick), 9:21.
Big — Sentz 40 run (Sentz kick), 1:25.
Han — Deandre Kerr 17 pass from Krout (Justin Barnes pass from Krout), 8:40.
Big — Dayne Showers 9 run (Sentz kick), 4:23.
Han — Resean Williams 80 pass from Krout (Everett Kenworthy kick), 4:07.
Big — Sentz 1 run (Sentz kick), 1:42.
Big — Showers 37 run (Sentz kick), 3:55.
Han Big First downs1424 Rushes-Yards27-4853-280 Passing13-27-19-12-0 Passing Yards22495 Total Yards272375 Punts5-373-28.3 Fumbles-Lost3-00-0 Penalties-Yards9-858-50
Rushing — Han, Jordan Laughman 15-57, Deandre Kerr 3-10, Justin Barnes 3-0, Kyle Krout 5-(-21), Resean Williams 1-2. Big, Colton Sentz 28-179, Dayne Showers 11-91, Scott Cooper 5-7, Ben Hurda 5-(-7), Malakai Curtis 4-10.
Passing — Han, Krout 13-27-1-224. Big, Hurda 9-12-0-95.
Receiving — Han, Bill Morris 4-57, Williams 2-87, Colten Ehrhart 3-26, Laughman 1-16, Kerr 1-17, Barnes 1-16, Austin Bryson 1-5. Big, Cooper 3-30, Gage McAuliffe 2-11, Sentz 2-13, Nick Bell 1-10, Nate Newberry 1-31.