Wilson senior Jadyn Jones was soaked from head to toe, a little sore from carrying the football 30 times but never felt better.
Jones rushed for 177 yards Friday night to help Wilson defeat Manheim Township 21-14, completing a midseason turnaround to capture a 28th Lancaster-Lebanon League Section 1 title.
“I want to say we had no doubts,” Jones said about Wilson’s 2-3 start to the season. “I know what we had within us. Our non-league schedule was very difficult, which put us in a tough situation going into the league.”
But the Bulldogs (5-0, 7-3) dominated in their first three league games and pounded the ball on the ground the past two weeks in nail-biting wins over Hempfield and Manheim Township (3-2, 6-4).
After an exchange of fumbles on back-to-back plays late in the third quarter, Hoffman scored on a 10-yard run to give Wilson a 14-7 lead.
Manheim Township answered when Hayden Johnson completed a 27-yard touchdown pass on fourth down to Anthony Ivey on the first play of the fourth quarter. Ivey, a senior wide receiver committed to attend Penn State, caught only one other pass and fumbled at the end of the run.
Cam Jones returned the ensuing kickoff to the Blue Streaks’ 46 to set up the Wilson offense. Sean Dendall made a leaping 32-yard reception on third down to keep the drive alive and Hoffman sneaked in from the 2 with 8:05 left.
After Wilson got a stop on defense, Cam Jones had a 71-yard punt return called back by a penalty.
But Wilson was able to run the last six minutes off the clock with Jadyn Jones and Hoffman picking up key first downs.
“We’re a run-heavy team,” Jadyn Jones said. “In these weather conditions we’ve got to run the ball and we did just that and won the game.”