One Of Those Nights


Washington County Enterprise-Leader - - FRONT PAGE - By Mark Humphrey

FARM­ING­TON — Tues­day was one of those nights when ev­ery­thing that could go wrong did for the Farm­ing­ton Car­di­nals as they lost their sea­son-opener, 36-13, to ri­val Prairie Grove.

Farm­ing­ton coach Mike Adams ac­knowl­edged there were mis­cues that hurt the Car­di­nals in var­i­ous as­pects of the game, but one par­tic­u­lar play seemed to sum up the Car­di­nals’ night.

“Af­ter we ran a quick screen, our guard was sup­posed to pull and get out there and block, but our cen­ter stepped on his foot and he didn’t get out there. He got back up af­ter he fell down and ran out there, but

he didn’t get there in time to make a block. We made a touch­down, then we get a hold­ing penalty. There were times we’d make a first down, then we’d drop a pass. We were our own worst en­e­mies. We mis­han­dled a snap. We couldn’t get out of our own way.”

Prairie Grove took an early 6-0 lead on JD El­der’s 26-yard touch­down pass to Collin Bryant, but their 2-point try failed. Farm­ing­ton looked sharp on their first se­ries, driv­ing 70 yards to an­swer. Caleb Wil­liams scored from 7 yards out and Drew Stur­geon kicked the point-af­ter for a 7-6 Farm­ing­ton lead. That soon evap­o­rated.

On Prairie Grove’s next pos­ses­sion An­thony John­son’s 4-yard touch­down run put the Tigers back in front. They led 12-7 af­ter one quar­ter of play and mis­takes snow­balled for Farm­ing­ton. A pass was bat­ted down at the line of scrim­mage and the Car­di­nals punted. The quar­ter ended with Prairie Grove knock­ing on the door. John­son’s 12 yard gain put the Tigers in the red zone.

On the first play of the sec­ond quar­ter, JD El­der threw to tight end DeMarkus Cooper for a 19-yard score as he blew away de­fend­ers, who couldn’t bring him down un­til he crossed the goal line.

“That’s the only thing I try to do when I catch that ball,” Cooper said. “I turn around and I try to score. If some­one’s be­tween me and the end zone I try to knock them down. This game means to much to us. I don’t what to do if we hadn’t won it.”

JD El­der then passed to Stone Bryant, Collin’s twin brother, for a 2-point con­ver­sion. The Tigers led 20-7 at the 11:51 mark of the sec­ond quar­ter.

A quar­ter­back sack forced the Car­di­nals to punt from the shadow of their own goal line, but they never got the kick off when the snap hit one of the up-backs. Punter Ja­cob Gray tried to run, but was tack­led and Prairie Grove took over on downs at the Car­di­nal 15. Two plays later John­son scored his sec­ond rush­ing touch­down and Prairie Grove went up, 26-7, with 7:56 left in the first half.

Still Farm­ing­ton had op­por­tu­ni­ties to get back in the game, but wasted all three of their first half time­outs on de­fense and didn’t have one in a crit­i­cal sit­u­a­tion. The Car­di­nals drove to the Tiger four and quar­ter­back Trey Wag­gle spiked the ball stop­ping the clock with 1 sec­ond left, but a sack ended the half.

Farm­ing­ton re­cov­ered a fum­bled punt and held the ball nearly nine min­utes of the third quar­ter. Back-up quar­ter­back Seth Swain ran for a touch­down on third and goal from the Tiger four, but the score was nul­li­fied by a hold­ing flag. Farm­ing­ton even­tu­ally turned the ball over on downs with­out scor­ing. Collin Bryant’s 74-yard in­ter­cep­tion run­back for a de­fen­sive touch­down sealed the game for Prairie Grove in the fourth quar­ter.

The Tigers got a 21-yard field goal by se­nior Ben Bea­son and Farm­ing­ton got a 25-yard touch­down run by tail­back Reid Turner to cap the scor­ing.

“I turn around and I try to score. If some­one’s be­tween me and the end zone I try to knock them down. This game means to much to us. I don’t what to do if we hadn’t won it.” DeMarkus Cooper Tight End, Prairie Grove


Prairie Grove se­nior quar­ter­back J.D. El­der fakes a hand­off to full­back Aaron Pre­ston dur­ing the Tigers’ 36-13 vic­tory over ri­val Farm­ing­ton on Aug. 29. The Tues­day var­sity foot­ball game drew a big crowd. More game de­tails and pho­tos in Sports, Page 1B.

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