September 07, 2011 Edition

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Walnut Ridge's Zach Crisler turns to run after making a catch during the Bobcats' game against Corning on Friday night. Walnut Ridge led early, but Corning came back to record a 30-27 victory.
Submitted Photo ~ Ashley George

Battle of Bobcats ends
in Corning's favor

Nathan Hibbard
Staff Writer

Walnut Ridge jumped out to an early lead, only to see Corning storm back for a 30-27 victory in a battle of Bobcats Friday night at Sexton Field.

Walnut Ridge quarterback Payton Poole connected with Zach Carson for a 24-yard touchdown with 10:08 to play in the opening quarter. Cason McQuay added the extra point for a 7-0 lead for the home team.

Poole found Carson for another 24-yard score with 4:42 to play in the period. Corning blocked the PAT to keep the score 13-0.

Corning got on the scoreboard on their ensuing possession when Cory Henderson raced 62 yards to bring the visitors to with 13-6.

Walnut Ridge extended its lead to 21-6 early in the second quarter on Zach Crisler's three-yard run. Crisler then passed to Ryan Vaughn for the two-point conversion.

Corning responded with Ty Prater's 40-yard touchdown run and two-point conversion to cut their deficit to 21-14 with 8:48 to play before halftime. Late in the quarter, with Walnut Ridge driving, Corning's Russell Cox intercepted a pass and returned it 65 yards for a score. A successful two-point conversion gave the visitors a 22-21 lead at halftime.

Walnut Ridge regained the lead on a one-yard run by Crisler with 2:44 remaining in the third quarter. Corning stopped the two-point attempt, keeping Walnut Ridge's lead at 27-22.

Walnut Ridge's defense apparently stopped Corning on the visitor's ensuing possession. Corning reached into their bag of tricks and Cox raced 55 yards for the go-ahead touchdown on a fake punt. The two-point conversion provided the winning margin, as neither team would score in the final period.

Poole finished 21-for-29 for 274 yards. Crisler rushed for 51 yards on 13 carries.

Walnut Ridge opens conference play on Friday when they travel to Cedar Ridge. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

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