HAMPTON – Capitalizing on a slew of turnovers by Hampton in the second half, the Rison Junior Wildcats broke open a tight game with a 3-touchdown third quarter on their way to a 44-20 rout of the Junior Bulldogs last Thursday night at Boyd Arnold Stadium.
With the win in the battle of undefeated teams, Rison finished the season at 7-0 and claimed the 8-2A Conference championship.
“This is a good group of kids,” Rison junior head coach Justin Crain said, commenting about the Wildcats. “I was proud of the way we came out. Every time after a mistake we made up for it, so I thought we did well in handling adversity.”
In rolling to their undefeated season, the Junior ‘Cats averaged 41 points a game while yielding an average of 11 points an outing. Rison started off the season with a 22-12 win over McGehee and followed that up with conference victories over Bearden, 32-20; Hermitage, 40-6; Strong, 54-0; Parkers Chapel, 56-14; Camden Harmony Grove, 36-6; and Hampton, 44-20.
Following a scoreless first quarter in last Thursday’s contest at Hampton, Justin Huntley pounced on a Bulldog fumble at the Rison 43 with just 9 seconds gone in the second period. From their own 43, the Wildcats marched deep into Hampton territory, and from the Bulldogs’ 3, Donganell Hoke carried across for the touchdown. Hoke also added a 2-point conversion run and Rison led, 8-0, with 4:45 left in the half.
After Hampton responded with a 43-yard touchdown run to trim the Wildcats’ lead to 8-6, Hoke returned the ensuing kick 71 yards for a TD. A 2-point conversion run by Hoke gave Rison a 16-6 advantage.
To read the full article, see the November 1, 2017 print or e-Herald edition of The Herald.