Division II Report:
Hillbillies prepared for league rival
Ozark (3-1, 1-0) is sure it’s better prepared to face Booneville (3-1, 1-0) at home Friday than it was last season when the Hillbillies lost 14-0 to the Bearcats.
Booneville dominated the game defensively by holding Ozark to 113 yards of offense.
“We played a lot of sophomores in that game and we’re a heavy junior and senior team this year,” Ozark coach Jeremie Burns said. “We’re able to do more things, like changing a play at the line of scrimmage. That extra year of preparation makes a big difference.”
Ozark displayed plenty of firepower last week in a 47-14 victory over Waldron. Quarterback Dawson Dietz completed 14 of 20 passes for 318 yards and three touchdowns. Sophomore Bryant Burns was Dietz’ favorite target with four catches for 147 yards and two touchdowns.
That combination helped open up some running room for Daniel Woolsey, who rushed for 92 yards and three touchdowns.
“I was pleased with how our offense was clicking,” Burns said. “Dawson made some really good decisions and Bryant caught the ball well.”
Elks seek revenge
Paybacks are swell.
That’s the attitude Elkins will bring in its home game on Friday against Mountain View. The Elks could’ve won the 3A-1 Conference championship outright last season if not for a 30-23 loss at Mountain View.
The race ended in a three-way tie after Elkins beat Clinton and Clinton beat Mountain View.
“We got a taste of Murphy’s Law in that one,” Elkins coach Chad Harbison said of the loss at Mountain View. “Everything that could go wrong, did go wrong for us. Our kids were confident, maybe, too confident going into the game. They play a real physical style and they got us.”
Elkins (3-1, 1-0) opened conference play with a 46-14 victory over Yellville-Summit while Mountain View (0-4, 0-1) fell 31-14 to Melbourne. Chance Jones rushed for 91 yards and three touchdowns and returned a kickoff 81 yards to spark the Elks, who led 38-6 at halftime. Sophomore quarterback Quinn McClain completed 10 of 12 passes for 145 yards.
“That’s the second kickoff return Chance has taken for 80-plus yards and a touchdown,” Harbison said. “He’s strong and he can really run when he sees a crease. He’s just a dynamic player who is making big plays in a lot of different ways.”
Lions eying meat of schedule
Gravette got off to a good start in 4A-1 Conference play with a 40-7 victory over Lincoln. But the competition will increase significantly with back-to-back games against Prairie Grove and Pea Ridge, which both advanced the semifinals of the Class 4A state playoffs last year.
The first test comes Friday when Gravette (2-2, 1-0) goes on the road to face the TIgers (4-0, 1-0), who are ranked No. 4 in Class 4A.
Gravette will need a much better performance than last season when Prairie Grove won 35-0 on the Lions’ home field. The Tigers pulled away after leading only 7-0 at halftime.
“We played decent defense in that game but we could never get anything going on offense,” Gravette coach Bill Harrelson said.
Gravette had plenty of offense against Lincoln, especially on the ground where Austin O’Brien rushed for 254 yards and five touchdowns. O’Brien had plenty of support from his offense line and the Lions’ defense held Lincoln scoreless until the final minute of the game.
“Our offensive line really played well and our defensive line just dominated the game,” Harrelson said.
— Rick Fires • @NWARick