All local teams move on in Round 2
Round 1 was slow in Saline County as only two teams took the field. With Round 2 set Friday, the state football playoffs are sure to be something to watch for local fans again.
Bauxite fell in its opening round, ending its season. Glen Rose advanced with a blowout over Walnut Ridge and Benton and Bryant both enjoyed muchdeserved bye weeks.
Here are my picks for Round 2: Bryant (10-0) vs. Fayetteville
In Week 3, this was a battle of No. 1 and No. 2 in the state rankings. However, Bryant was leaps and bounds ahead of Fayetteville, even on the road, winning in a blowout.
But the playoffs are a different story. This could be a setup game for the Hornets if they are not careful.
While I don’t think that will be the case at all, Bryant can ill-afford to come into it with the “we-can’t-lose” attitude.
Bryant has clicked on all cylinders every week through 10 games thus far. That shouldn’t change.
Look for a big night from the defense once more and also from quarterback Austin Ledbetter.
This will be all Bryant again.
Big Blue rolls, 44-20. Benton (7-3) vs. Jonesboro (8-3) Benton turned on the jets at the end of the season, winning three crucial tilts to be No. 1 in 6A and have homefield throughout.
Jonesboro and Benton have a history, having tangoed at this point of the year in the past.
If Benton can continue to run the ball well and cut down on the big plays on defense, the Panthers should be in Round 3 easily.
I like Benton in this one, especially at home. Limit the turnovers and move on. Panthers win 38-21.
Glen Rose (9-2) vs. Melbourne (9-2)
The Beavers got over the early round hump last week, rolling past Walnut Ridge by nearly 30.
This week, though, the Beavers will have to stop the strong passing attack of Melbourne and company.
Limiting the big plays and holding on to the football will be the two main keys.
I like Glen Rose in this one, but maybe not by as much as some others.
Beavers advance, win 32-24.