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Home News-Telegram Sports That’s More Like It -- Wildcats return to winning ways, hammering MP 47-7

That’s More Like It -- Wildcats return to winning ways, hammering MP 47-7

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MOUNT PLEASANT — It was a perfect game plan executed without a flaw.

Sulphur Springs head football Greg Owens outlined earlier in the week how he wanted the Wildcats to jump out quickly and not let up against Mount Pleasant.

Sulphur Springs did just that scoring early and often, taking a 47-7 win here Friday night in Mount Pleasant. The Tigers were pretty toothless in comparison with the high-octane Wildcat attack.

The Tigers got just 2.2 yards per carry on the ground. Accounting for 179 total yards compared to 422 total yards by the Wildcats. Sulphur Springs averaged 6.6 per yards per rush.

Sulphur Springs scored four times in the first  quarter and the rout was on as the Wildcats dominated the entire night.

“We had a fast start. We’d talked about doing things right from the beginning. We took it and scored. We forced their hand. Our defense go a safety and it was on from that point,” Owens said. “We stymied them again and again. We did a great job, we stepped up and did what we had to do. That’s one down.”

The win gives Sulphur Springs a 6-2 mark, 2-2 in district with two games left. Mount Pleasant falls to 1-4 in district 3-6 overall.

Sulphur Springs took the opening kickoff and did not waste time getting a scoring drive. The Wildcats had good field position from the start after the opening kickoff was booted out-of-bounds near midfield.

The Wildcats drove down the field with a mixture of runs and passes. Lemarcus Kendricks ran wide for 12 yards. Quarterback Colton Lee completed a pass for a short gain, then Lee ran for 17 yards and a first down. After a penalty negated a run by Kody Chester which would have been a score. The Wildcats shook off the holding penalty and scored anyway. On a third down from the 12, Lee threw a perfect strike to wide out Shane McQueen for the first tally of the game. The Fernando Arellano kick at the 9:56 mark gave the visiting Wildcats a 7-0 lead.

But the fun for Sulphur Springs and their large group of fans was just beginning.

Mount Pleasant managed just six yards on their first three offensive plays. A big hit by Jimmy Villa halted Cash Thompson in the hole, bankrupting the drive. Hurndon went back in punt formation deep in his own territory, a bad snap sailed over his head. Hurndon tried to be heroic and run the ball out, but was captured in the end zone by 6-6 senior defensive end Kedrick Dial for a safety. The Wildcats went up 9-0 with 7:58 left in the opening frame.

Bryant “Day Day” Jackson had a nice return of the short punt following the safety.

Sulphur Springs was set up at the Tigers’ 41-yard and they began another scoring drive.  A run by Chester netted just three yards. Lee threw to Jackson for a five-yard gain. Then the Wildcats got a huge break as a fumble by Kendricks was recovered downfield by  Garrett Ferguson for a first down at the 30 of the Tigers. Lee was in fine form running for a 15-yard gain. Then the senior QB threw to Kendricks for a short gain. On a second down from the eight-yard line, Chester capped the drive with a spirited run up the middle, following blockers into the end zone. Arellano’s kick was again perfect and the Wildcats were ahead 16-0 at the 4:59 mark of the first period.

Strong defense by Dial, Fred Gilstrap and others allowed the Tigers to only net seven yards on three running plays, forcing another punt. Hurndon managed a short boot which gave the Wildcats nice field position near midfield.

Again, it did not take Sulphur Springs long to score. In 2:08 the Wildcats drove from the 49 to the goal line for a score. Lee was sparkling as he ran the show. He completed two passes to Alvin Frazier for a total of 18 yards. Chester ran for two yards. Then Lee went back to Frazier for a seven-yard gain to the 12. Lee completed a strike to Chester coming out of the backfield for a 10-yard gain. Lee called his own number and ended the drive with a two-yard scoring lunge. The extra point gave the Wildcats a 23-0 lead with just 37 ticks left in the first frame.

The second quarter was more of the same with the Mount Pleasant running game stopped for little gains by the inspired Wildcat defense. The Tigers were forced to punt again and the Herndon offering was short and with a Jackson return, Sulphur Springs set up shop at the 45-yard line of Mount Pleasant.

This time the Tigers gave some resistance on defense as they held the Wildcats to a field goal. The key play in the drive for MP was a sack of Lee for a five yard loss. Arellano made the 28-yard boot to pad the Sulphur Springs lead to 26-0.

It was the same formula again working for the Wildcats. Even a personal foul on Sulphur Springs did not help the Tigers get any momentum of consistency enough for a drive.

The Wildcats got the ball back, but soon returned the pigskin to the Tigers. A Justin Owens pass was tipped and intercepted by  Jason Armstead of Mount Pleasant.

The Tigers could not stand the prosperity and fumbled the ball back to the Wildcats a play later.

The Wildcats took over at the 50 with 4:40 left in the opening half. Kendricks ran for 13 yards. Lee threw to Kendricks for a short gain. Lee then sound McQueen open  for a 41-yard gain. The Wildcats were set up in the shadow of the goal post. Kendricks closed out the possession with a nine-yard scoring scamper at the 3:31 mark. Arellano’s kick was good, giving the Wildcats a 33-0 lead.

The Tigers showed some spunk in the final seconds of the first half with Hurndon completing a pass to Armstead down the Sulphur Springs 13-yard line. But the final play of the first half saw the Hurndon deep pass fall incomplete.

Big hits by Villa and Joe Scott limited the Tigers to just seven yards on their initial possession of the third period. It was punting time again for Hurndon, this offering was short. Sulphur Springs began the third quarter on offense at the 40 of Mount Pleasant. Lee completed a 12-yard pass to Kendricks. Then Lee threw to Jackson for a seven-yard gain.The Wildcats finished off the final 28 yards of the drive on four running plays. Chester got his teammates excited as he went the last 12 yards of real estate with a powerful run to the end zone, bulling over would-be Tiger tacklers like bowling pins on the touchdown run. The extra point was perfect and with 7:35 left in the third period, it was all over but the crying. Sulphur Springs was up 40-0 and started inserting reserve players.

Mount Pleasant drove for their only score of the game in the fourth period. The Tiger got a three-yard scoring run by Hurndon with 8:01 remaining in the game. The extra point by Ignacio Castro was good to make it 40-7.

Sulphur Springs removed Lee and other starters. Senior Sawyer Sinclair was inserted to finish the game at quarterback. Sinclair rushed six times for 35 yards which allowed the clock to keep running. Sinclair ended the drive with the final touchdown of the game. He found a big hole and the line and leaned into the end zone falling onto pay dirt for a touchdown. The extra point was good to make the final, 47-7.

Sinclair said, “I was getting tired, but I got to score. It felt good because I hadn’t scored a varsity touchdown before. It was pretty cool. I got close and there was no turning around. It was nice to get it in Mount Pleasant. My family is kind of based here, I went to school in Mount Pleasant for a few years. It was like a homecoming for me, it was really nice.”

Owens said, “The players were really chomping at the bit for Sawyer to score. He was raised here. He has family here. It meant a lot for him to do well and get a score.”

The Wildcats will come home to Gerald Prim Stadium to take on Marshall Oct. 29 in another key district game.

“Marshall’s good, they just beat Texas High. It will be an important game,” Owens said. “We’ll go back, study film and practice. It’s what we do, we have to be prepared. It will be another tough one.”

The Wildcats in the same position they were in this time last year. They are 2-2 in district with two district games remaining.

Sulphur Springs returns home for Marshall before ending the regular season district play at Hallsville on Nov. 6

“We know what is ahead of us and we control our own destiny,” Owens added. “We want to win the rest of them. If we do that then we know we are in.”

 

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