Min­ers set for show­down with Robin­son

The Saline Courier - - FRONT PAGE - By Josh Briggs [email protected]­ton­courier.com

BAUX­ITE — The Baux­ite Min­ers (6-1, 4-0) are rid­ing a six-game win­ning streak into Week 8 while sit­ting alone atop the 7-4A Con­fer­ence stand­ings.

Af­ter de­feat­ing Foun­tain Lake on the road in a rout last week, the Min­ers en­ter the tough­est por­tion of their sched­ule as Robin­son, de­fend­ing 4A cham­pion Arkadel­phia and Nashville re­main.

Last week, Baux­ite kept to the ground, rush­ing for 339 yards and five scores with sopho­more Fabian Tor­res lead­ing the way with 110 yards and a score.

Quar­ter­back Con­ner Stacy com­pleted 6 of 7 at­tempts for 58 yards and an in­ter­cep­tion while also rush­ing for 94 yards and a score in the win.

On Fri­day, Baux­ite will visit Robin­son (6-1, 3-1).

The Se­na­tors have won two straight af­ter fall­ing to Arkadel­phia for their only loss this sea­son. Baux­ite de­feated Robin­son 41-35 at The Pit in 2018, scor­ing 20

fourth-quar­ter points in the process.

Like pre­vi­ous sea­sons, Robin­son has been able to torch teams through the air and on the ground in 2019.

Quar­ter­back Buddy Gas­ton leads the way with 1,412 yards and 18 touch­downs while com­plet­ing 79 of 142 pass­ing at­tempts. He has also suf­fered six in­ter­cep­tions through seven games.

In his last two games, Gas­ton is 22 for 37 with five touch­downs and 345 yards. Robin­son won both con­tests by a com­bined 80-14 score.

The gun­slinger’s best game of the year came in Week 2 against Rogers when he com­pleted 17 of 30 at­tempts for 437 yards and six touch­downs. The Se­na­tors would es­cape with a 66-58 vic­tory.

On the ground, Gas­ton is no threat at all, rush­ing for only 48 yards on 22 keeps. In his last three games he has a com­bined mi­nus-16 yards from scrim­mage.

How­ever, ju­nior run­ning back Hunter Smith is a dif­fer­ent story.

On the year he has rushed for 1,018 yards on

106 car­ries and 10 TDS.

Against Malvern in Week 7 he trucked for 158 yards and two scores on only 14 touches. He has been held un­der 100 yards in a game only twice this sea­son.

Smith has also re­turned two kick­offs back for touch­downs for Robin­son in 2019.

Se­nior re­ceivers PJ Hall and Mar­tel Nu­nally have been the go-to tar­gets thus far, com­bin­ing for 49 catches and more than 950 yards on the year. Hall leads the team with nine scores, fol­lowed by Nu­nally with three.

Hall also av­er­ages 20.3 yards per re­cep­tion while his fel­low ball-catcher comes in at an even 19 yards per catch.

On de­fense, Hall has snatched two in­ter­cep­tions and has a blocked field goal on his re­sume.

De­fen­sively, the Se­na­tors are artists when it comes to drop­ping op­po­nents be­hind the line, hav­ing col­lected 146 tack­les for loss this sea­son.

Se­nior Chan­dler Mcin­tosh leads the way with 26 TFLS while also lead­ing the team with 91 to­tal tack­les.

JT Tow­ers, a for­mer Glen Rose prod­uct, fol­lows with 48 to­tal take­downs — 20 for loss.

Kick­off is set for 7 p.m. in Lit­tle Rock.

GREG Davis/spe­cial to The Saline Courier

Baux­ite sopho­more Fabian Tor­res runs in a game ear­lier this sea­son. Tor­res and the Min­ers travel to Lit­tle Rock Fri­day to take on the Robin­son Se­na­tors in 7-4A Con­fer­ence ac­tion.

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