Pre­dic­tion made for 2A state ti­tle game.

El Dorado News-Times - - Sports -

HOOTENS.COM GAME OF THE WEEK No. 1 Hazen vs. No. 2 Junc­tion City

These teams met for the 2014 Class 2A cham­pi­onship with Junc­tion City win­ning 38-6 for its third con­sec­u­tive state ti­tle and its sixth in a 12-year span.

Junc­tion City re­turned to the state ti­tle game last year in Class 3A but lost 48-14 to River­crest. Hazen is 0-3 all-time in state fi­nal ap­pear­ances.

Junc­tion City's of­fen­sive line, spear­headed by se­nior guard Cody Ad­kins, av­er­ages 295 pounds and clears lanes for se­nior run­ning back Dhante Gib­son (1,580 yards, 22 touch­downs) and ju­nior run­ning back Jak­iron Cook (1,118 yards, 17 touch­downs).

While Junc­tion City of­ten spreads the field to run, ju­nior quar­ter­back Brady Hutch­e­son has bol­stered Junc­tion City's pass­ing num­bers the past three weeks by com­plet­ing a com­bined 19-of-23 at­tempts for 425 yards in blowouts of Moun­tain­burg (50-14) and Des Arc (55-13) and a dom­i­nat­ing 40-20 win last week over de­fend­ing Class 2A cham­pion Fore­man.

Junc­tion City’s 5-2 de­fense has tight­ened be­hind se­nior de­fen­sive line­man Se­maj Lev­ingston (46 tack­les, 6 1/2 tack­les for loss), se­nior line­backer Jva­cye Cook (74 stops) and sopho­more Tan­ner Bar­nett (team-high 85 stops).

Junc­tion City al­lowed 103 points in its first three games. It has al­lowed 94 points (9.4 points per game) in the 10 games since.

Hazen coun­ters with line­men (on both sides) who av­er­age 240 pounds.

Se­nior left tackle Cade Perry and 260-pound cen­ter Jack­son Shel­man spear­head an O-line that has paved the way for 362 (mostly rush­ing) yards per game.

Ju­nior run­ning backs Ay'Jon Green and Tar­rall Penn have both topped 1,400 yards this sea­son while vol­un­tar­ily split­ting the car­ries ev­ery week. A week ago, Hazen trucked Mount Ida for 351 yards in a 42-0 blowout.

An ag­gres­sive Hazen de­fense al­lows just 136 yards and eight points per game.

Perry av­er­ages 15 stops a week at mid­dle line­backer, while Shel­man, 240-pound Blayne Toll and 230-pound nose guard Jake Walker an­chor the in­te­rior line.

LAST WEEK

Hootens.com cor­rectly picked one of two semi­fi­nal games (50 per­cent) last week.

Hootens.com has picked 228 of 284 (80 per­cent) for the sea­son.

WEEK 15 CHAM­PI­ONSHIP PRE­DIC­TION (fa­vored team in CAPS fol­lowed by point spread)

HAZEN (6) vs. Junc­tion City: See Game of the Week.

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