Division II Report
Lions notch first win
Gravette will take some momentum into conference play after earning its first victory of the season.
The Lions won 26-7 over a team from Jay, Okla., that was 3-0 and averaging 38 points per game. Gravette took an early lead and pulled away behind Austin O’Brien, who rushed for 144 yards and caught a touchdown pass for 41 yards. Brady Moorman also returned a punt for a touchdown to give the Lions a 19-0 lead.
“O’Brien had a big night and our defense held them to seven points, which made a huge impact,” Gravette coach Bill Harrelson said. “Jay is a good football team. The win was a big confidence-booster for our guys.”
Gravette (1-2) now turns its attention to the 4A-1 Conference opener against Lincoln (1-2) on Friday. The Lions will face the Wolves at home before going on the road to play Prairie Grove and Pea Ridge, two teams that advanced to the state semifinals in Class 4A.
Lincoln beat Keys, Okla., in its season-opener and lost a 39-36 slugfest to Mansfield last week.
“It’s our first conference game and we need to start 1-0,” Harrelson said “A loss really puts you behind the eight-ball.”
Bulldogs moving ahead
The season will continue for the Decatur Bulldogs.
Decatur and Gentry played only a half of football two weeks after injuries left the Bulldogs with a shortage of able-bodied players. After a week off, 17 players are practicing this week for Friday’s home game against Mountainburg (1-2), which lost 38-14 to Danville.
Decatur (0-3) is hoping to complete its schedule then convince more players to come out for football next season.
“Our numbers in junior high are about the same,” said Decatur coach Ryan Woolard, who was hired before the season. “If we can get some more kids to come out for football, we’ll be able to rock and roll.”
Tigers have room for improvement
Charleston is 3-0 and ranked No. 2 in Class 3A, but the Tigers are far from satisfied with their play entering 4-3A Conference action.
Charleston beat Ozark 42-28 last week despite being penalized 12 times for 90 yards. Charleston also lost yardage when the snap from center sailed over the quarterback’s head when the Tigers were in scoring position.
So, there is still plenty to clean up before Friday’s home game against Cedarville.
“We have the potential to be a really good football team, but we’re certainly not there yet,” Charleston coach Greg Kendrick said. “We don’t want to peak until Week 15 but we’ve got to work on getting better and better each day. It’s all about the process.”
Ozark spotted Charleston a 14-0 lead, helped by two interceptions from Mason Keener, who returned the second one for a touchdown. The Hillbillies took control in the second half and tied the game before Charleston pulled away again in the third quarter.
“He’s a great kid who’s always in the right spot doing the right things, whether it’s football or out in the community,” Kendrick said of Keener. “They fought and clawed back both those interceptions set the tone early for us.”
— RICK FIRES • @NWArick