Wildcats lose heartbreaker at homecoming

By TREY HILL | News-Telegram Correspondent

Oct. 21, 2007 - EMORY - For the second week in a row, two plays separated the Emory Rains Wildcats from picking up their first district win of the season.

It took most of the game, but Rains managed to overcome a 78-yard interception that led to Wills Point taking the early lead. However, Rains could not overcome a 63-yard touchdown pass in the final two minutes in a 23-19 homecoming loss to the Wills Point Tigers on Friday night at Wildcat Stadium.

Rains was threatening to score on its second drive deep into Wills Point territory when Austen Brewer intercepted a Taylor Marshall pass near the 22-yard line and raced 78 yards to give Wills Point the opening points of the game. Wills Point added a 4-yard touchdown run by LeHendrick Qualls to extend its lead to 13-0 with 3:57 remaining in the second quarter.

After their two previous unsuccessful attempts, the third time was the charm as the Wildcats put together a 10-play drive that concluded with a 19-yard touchdown pass from Montrel Christian to Colby Hoover that put the Wildcats on the scoreboard.

Wills Point used the final 18 seconds of the first half to add a 23-yard field goal by Tyler Wicks to take a 16-6 lead into the intermission.

Newly-crowned Homecoming queen Cecily Hooten presided over a second half in which the Wildcats dominated.

Wills Point had racked up 148 yards of offense during the first half of play, but during the second half Rains caged the Tigers and allowed just two first downs in their first five possessions of the second half.

Momentum swung completely in the Wildcats' favor when Wills Point gambled on fourth-and-inches and failed, giving Rains possession on its own 30-yard line. Three plays later, Montrea Hobbs took a handoff on a draw and raced 29 yards into the end zone. Devan Anderson added the point-after kick to pull Rains to within 16-13 with 2:39 remaining in the third quarter.

Colby Hoover set up the next score for Rains when he intercepted and returned a Garland Perry pass to the Wills Point 30-yard line. From there it took Rains just six plays to reach the end zone and take the lead on a 4-yard touchdown run by Christian. The touchdown gave Rains its first lead of the game at 19-16 with 3:39 remaining.

It looked like the Wildcats were on their way to a win when they trapped Brewer behind the line for an 11-yard loss, then broke up a pair of passes to force Wills Point into a fourth-and-21 situation from their own 37-yard line. Mark Barefield snatched the win from the Wildcats when he got behind the Rains secondary and pulled in a pass for a 63-yard touchdown that gave Wills Point the winning margin.

Friday night the Wildcats will travel to Quinlan to take on the Quinlan Ford Panthers. The game is set for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff.

Wills Point-Rains, Stats

Wills Point 0 16 0 7 - 23

Rains 0 6 7 6 - 19

Second Quarter

WP – Austen Brewer 78 interception return (Tyler Wicks kick), 9:43

WP -- LeHendrick Qualls 5 run (run failed), 3:57

Rains – Colby Hoover 19 pass from Montrel Christian (kick blocked), 0:18

WP – Wicks 23-yard field goal, 0:00

Third Quarter

Rains – Montrea Hobbs 29 run (Devan Anderson kick), 2:39

Fourth Quarter

Rains – Christian 4 run (kick blocked), 3:39

WP – Mark Barefield 63 pass from Chris Pruitt (Wicks kick), 2:17

Wills Point Rains

First downs 10 16

Rushes-yards 25-74 49-153

Passing yards 178 101

Total yards 252 254

Comp-Att-Int 7-15-1 5-13-2

Punts-Avg 3-30 2-36

Penalties-yards 7-55 2-10

Fumbles-lost 2-1 3-1

INDIVIDUAL STATS

RUSHING – Wills Point: LeHendrick Qualls 10-30; Chris Pruitt 9-25; Austen Brewer 5-20; Cody Henderson 1-(minus 1). Rains: Montrea Hobbs 25-106; Montrel Christian 10-31; Gage Ogeda 6-7; Travis Gibson 2-5; Taylor Marshall 5-3; Blake Hicks 1-1.

PASSING – Wills Point: Pruitt 6-11-0, 134 yards; Garland Perry 1-4-1, 44 yards. Rains: Christian 3-8-1, 84 yards; Marshall 2-5-1, 17 yards.

RECEVING: Mark Barefield 2-107; Brewer 1-39; Steven Cunigan 1-15; Revio Hickmon 2-14; Larry Dotson 1-4. Rains: Colby Hoover 2-53; Hobbs 1-37; Jake Ferguson 1-11.

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