Overall, Monday night’s tripleheader at the Sportsplex was a good night for Arab football fans, with the exception of the seventh grade team.
• JUNIOR VARSITY
Arab 28, Boaz 14
After the Knights’ defense held the Pirates on downs, Arab picked up its first score with 4:32 to go in the first quarter on a 10-yard run from Andrew Williamson.
But, it was after halftime when the Knights really came alive, primarily on the back of Logan Alldredge, who picked up 148 yards on 14 carries in the second half alone.
On Arab’s opening drive of the third quarter, Alldredge carried four straight times for 37 yards to the Boaz 28, where QB Jackson Cook connected with Williamson for a touchdown.
After the Pirates answered with a 53-yard touchdown run, the Knights returned the favor. On first down, Alldredge carried for 62 yards to the Pirate 3 and after a penalty, scored on 6-yard run.
Arab’s final score came on its next drive of 75 yards in 10 plays. Alldredge scored on a 5-yard run with 4:28 to go in the game and had six other carries during the drive, which had other highlights.
On fourth-and-1 at the Pirate 36, Boaz was penalized for offsides. Cook also completed two passes, a 4-yarder to Williamson and a 20-yard play to Landon Strickland that set the Knights up at the Boaz 11.
Aiden Wooten was good on all the extra point attempts and Peyton Jackson came up big for Arab with two interceptions.
• 8TH GRADE
Arab 18, Buckhorn 8
The Junior Knights were sputtering early in their final game of the season, as they turned the ball over on downs their second drive and lost a fumble on the third.
But, Arab scored with 1:47 remaining in the half on a 1-yard run from Preston Pritchett to cap a drive highlighted by a Davis Kinney 25-yard completion to Graham Grisham that carried to the 1-yard line.
After the Knights’ defense held the Bucks on downs, the Knights scored in six plays on a Pritchett run of 13 yards.
The Knights’ Alex Escalante picked up his second interception of the evening and Pritchett scored again, this time on a 40-yard run up the middle. It was a game where the offense and defense complimented each other, in more ways than one.
“About three or four weeks ago, we started working on getting more one-way players than two-way players and that really helped us with depth,” said coach Jason Guger. “Buckhorn was playing a lot of kids both ways while we were running 11 on and 11 off most of the night, and in my opinion it was the difference in the game.”
For Pritchett, it took some buffing to get the shine to come out.
“He got off to a little bit of a rough start,” said Guger. “He had his first fumble of the year and he followed that up with another fumble that we ended up getting back but it kind of aggravated him and woke up the giant.
“He started running the ball hard after that and had an extremely good game. As we established the running game we could throw the ball when we wanted to and not when we had to. The defense had a great game all night for us and Alex really stepped up with those two picks.”
• 7TH GRADE
Buckhorn 28, Arab 6
With the game tied at 6 early, it appeared the Knights and Bucks would be in a dogfight, but poor tackling allowed Buckhorn to get their final three scores on big plays with runs of 40, 65 and 20 yards, as well as two, two-point conversions.
Buckhorn scored first on a 65-yard drive of 11 plays on a 3-yard run with 4:38 left in the second quarter, but Arab answered quickly. QB Eli Williams, who had 107 yards rushing on nine carries for the game, carried the ball on all four plays of a 65-yard drive and scored on a 6-yard run to tie the game with 2:22 to go in the half. But, that was it, as the Knights could not put together another productive drive.
Guger remained positive.
“A lot of people don’t play with a full seventh grade team, so we’re learning on the job,” he said. “I thought they got a little better every single game.
“We’ve just got to get a little more physical and get a little stronger in the off-season. We’re one of the few teams in Marshall County that has two teams, so we have to play the big boys every single year.
“The win-loss record is not what we want to focus on with these guys, we just want to get them ready for ninth
grade ball. I think the eighth graders did a good job of getting better every week both years and they’re ready to go. I think with some work, these 7seventh graders will do the same.”
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