October 1, 2008 Edition

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McCrory sneaks past WR

Bobcats Logan Gaither (left) and Brian Archibald tackle a McCrory player resulting in a fumble. Walnut Ridge came up just short in the game, falling 25-20.
Submitted Photo ~ Ginger Bibb
Nathan Hibbard
Staff Writer

The Walnut Ridge Bobcats lost a fumble at the McCrory one-yard line with less than a minute to play, allowing the Jaguars to hold on for a 25-20 victory over the Bobcats on Friday at Sexton Field.

McCrory got on the scoreboard first, when Boyd Williams scored from one-yard out with 5:34 to play in the opening quarter.

Walnut Ridge responded on its next possession, as Jared Blackwell scored on a quarterback keeper from 25 yards out. The PAT was no good, leaving the score tied at 6-6 with 1:29 remaining in the first period.

The Bobcats defense stepped up, as Bennett Dudley intercepted a Jaguar pass at the 10-yard line and returned it past midfield. Dudley then capped the ensuing drive with a five-yard run. Tim Cummins kick the PAT to give Walnut Ridge a 13-6 lead.

McCrory scored on their first possession of the second half, on a seven-yard run by Williams. The PAT tied the game 13-13.

A Bobcat fumble gave McCrory a short field and the Jaguars capitalized on the break as Williams scored his third rushing touchdown of the evening. The PAT was no good, leaving the Jaguars with a 19-13 lead.

The Bobcats were forced to punt on their next possession. Williams returned to punt 60 yards for a touchdown, his fourth of the game, giving McCrory a 25-13 lead as the third quarter expired.

Walnut Ridge cut into the Jaguars' lead when Blackwell hit Derek Medlock with a 53-yard touchdown pass with 7:22 to play. The Bobcats got the ball back for one final possession and appeared to be driving for a game-winning score, before losing the ball a yard short of the end zone.

"This was one of the toughest losses I've ever had to swallow and I feel for our kids who fought back to come up that close and still fall a little short. We'll have to stay positive and move forward and not dwell on this one," said Bobcat head coach Larry Treadway.

Blackwell finished 8-of-16 passing, for 160 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.

Dudley caught three passes for 55 yards. Logan Gaither caught four passes for 52 yards, and Medlock had one catch for 53 yards and a touchdown.

Dudley had 58 yards rushing on seven carries.

William Wilcoxson led the Bobcat defense with 21 tackles. Gaither had 19 tackles and an interception.

Walnut Ridge is now 2-2 overall and 1-2 in 2A-3 conference play. The Bobcats travel to Salem Friday night. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.

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