BY RICK WRIGHT –
Junior Bearcat Jacinto Perez returned the opening kickoff to mid-field to open the game. The first quarter was a defensive struggle featuring a big hit by Mason Brotherton in the Waldron backfield. The quarter ended on a Bulldog fumble recovered by Mena’s Mark Wilson.
With :54 seconds to play in the first half, the Jr. Bulldogs faced a first and 20 from their own 38. Waldron completed a deep pass that resulted in a 62 yard touchdown play. The two-point conversion failed, leaving the score at Waldron 6, Mena 0.
Zane Stephens returned the following kickoff all the way to the Waldron 45 yard line. On first down with :17 seconds left in the half, Stephens gained 20 to the Bulldog 15 yard line. With just eight seconds to go, Stephens threw a 15 yard touchdown pass to tight end Mason Brotherton to tie the contest. Stephens crossed the goal line on a quarterback keeper for the two-point conversion to put Mena on top 8-6 at the half.
The Junior Bearcats extended their lead in the third quarter at the 3:53 mark when Andrew Graves scored on 14 yard touchdown run. Stephens completed a pass to Devin Adams in the endzone for the two-point conversion to make the score Mena 16, Waldron 6.
On the next Bulldog possession, on third and six from their own 43, Waldron attempted another long pass, however, Bearcat Curtis Curry intercepted the pass at the Mena 48.
With 5:38 to play in the game, Stephens scored on a one yard quarterback keeper. The two-point conversion failed, leaving the score Mena 22, Waldron 6.
The Junior Bulldogs added a touchdown on a four yard run with 4:13 to play. With the two-point conversion, Waldron cut Mena’s lead to 22-14.
The Bearcats drove the ball to the Waldron 15 yard line where Mena ran out the clock to set the final score at Mena 22, Waldron 14.
The Junior Bearcats host Ashdown Thursday, September 22nd, with the kickoff set for 5:30.