September11, 2013 Edition

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Walnut Ridge's Cole Hicks runs the ball as teammate Tyler Binkley (#82) blocks a Corning defender during Friday night's 43-8 season-opening victory.
TD Photo ~ Ashley George

WR wins battle of Cats, 43-8

Nathan Hibbard
Staff Writer

Cole Hicks rushed for three touchdowns and caught a pass for a score to lead Walnut Ridge past Corning 43-8 in the opening game of the senior high football season on Friday at Sexton Field.

Walnut Ridge took a 6-0 lead on Hicks' 36-yard run with 8:54 to play in the first quarter. Neither team scored until Jordan Rainwater scored on a 19-yard run to tie the contest 6-6. The successful two-point conversion gave the visitors an 8-6 lead with 5:43 remaining in the second quarter.

Walnut Ridge wasted little time in regaining the lead, as quarterback Tyler Andrews connected with Hicks for a 59-yard score a minute later to give the hometown Bobcats a 12-8 advantage. Andrews then found Cash Lee with a 31-yard touchdown pass with 2:20 remaining in the quarter, as Walnut Ridge took an 18-8 lead into halftime.

The only points of the third quarter came on Hicks' six-yard run with 3:44 to play in the period, which gave Walnut Ridge a 24-8 lead.

Walnut Ridge continued to pull away in the fourth quarter. With 7:24 to play, Hicks found paydirt from a yard out for his fourth touchdown of the evening. Tyler Binkley scored on a 21-yard run two minutes later. Binkley then added the final score on a 30-yard run on the game's final play.

Hicks finished with 79 yards rushing and three touchdowns on eight carries. He also caught four passes for 115 yards and a touchdown. Binkley led Walnut Ridge in rushing, with 82 yards and two touchdowns on seven carries.

Andrews was six-of-18 passing, for 175 yards and two touchdowns.

Martin Crisler led Walnut Ridge on defense with 13 tackles. Gage Ditto recorded eight tackles, while Cody Reithemeyer had seven stops. Shelby Wake broke up four Corning passes and recovered a fumble. Drake Smith had two sacks.

Walnut Ridge travels to DeWitt on Friday for a non-conference matchup. Game time is set for 7 p.m.

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