Pioneers overpower Lions, advance to opening round of state playoffs
GRAVETTE — It was a rough night for Lion football fans Nov. 2 as Gravette played host to the rival Gentry Pioneers in its 2018 season finale at Lion Stadium in Gravette. In the end, the Pioneers dominated the contest, eventually bringing home a victory by 26 points over the Lions.
Before the start of the game, Gravette seniors from football, cheer squad and band were recognized during a brief ceremony at midfield. By the end of the ceremony, a line of seniors, accompanied by their parents, stretched from goal line to goal line. After a short photo session, it was time to get down to business.
The Pioneers quickly gained control of the contest in the early stages of the first half with a 25yard touchdown run by Beau Tomlin. Giovanni Ramirez’s point after attempt split the uprights, and the Pioneers were ahead by seven.
Midway through the second quarter, a pass from Gentry quarterback Brandon Atwood to Peyton Wright resulted in the second touchdown
of the evening for the Pioneers. Once again, Ramirez nailed the point after, giving the Pioneers a 14-0 lead.
With less than three minutes to play in the first half, a Gentry drive pushed the ball to the Gravette five-yard line. Atwood attempted a pass to Wright in the corner of the end zone. Mason Dagley intercepted the ball at the Lion one-yard line, halting the Pioneers’ drive. Gravette moved the ball downfield, but time ran out before the team could score, giving the Pioneers a 14-0 lead going into the halftime break.
A touchdown by Wright late in the third quarter, coupled with a second to Zack Jarnagan early in the fourth, sealed the deal for Gentry.
Gravette pulled to within the Gentry four-yard line twice in the second half, but the goal line stands by the Pioneers held fast, preventing the Lions from scoring. The Gentry Pioneers pulled off the win, defeating the Gravette Lions, 26-0.
The Gravette Lions finish the 2018 season with a 1-9 overall and 1-6 conference record.
The Gentry Pioneers finish the regular season with 3-7 overall and 3-4 conference records, earning them a number five seed in the state football playoffs. The Pioneers will face the Mena Bearcats in quadrant four of the state playoffs on Nov. 9, at 7 p.m., in Mena.
Open wide! Devon Ellis (33) opens his hands wide in order to receive a handoff from Brandon Atwood (5), who jumps into the air to deceive the Lion defense during the Gravette-Gentry football contest at Lion Stadium in Gravette Nov. 2.
Pioneers Zack Jarnagan (Gentry 10) flies past Lions’ Tajae White (left) and Jarrod Barker (71) on his way toward the end zone during the second quarter of the Gravette-Gentry football game in Gravette Nov. 2. Fortunately for the Lions, Jarnagan was tackled a few yards later by other Gravette defenders.