Heber Springs needed almost eight minutes to shake off its inexperience against Bald Knob in the basketball season opener.
The Lady Panthers took the lead for good at 12-11 less than two minutes left in the first quarter and pulled away to 58-36 win in a girls’ high school nonconference basketball game at the Panther Den on Monday.
Heber Springs led 17-11 after the opening quarter and then outscored Bald Knob 41-25.
Sophomores Madison Clemons and Jaylee Hooten led the Lady Panthers with 18 and 16 points, respectively. Senior Ellie Riddle, the only returning player with high school game experience, contributed 13 points.
“The slow start could be attributed to first-game jitters,” Heber Springs coach Jamey Riddle said. “We were unsure how we played at times during the first quarter and our inexperience showed. We fouled too much. For the most part, when things didn’t start out smooth and you still win, you have to be happy with that.”
Riddle said he was pleased with three players scoring in double figurers, but the team will need production from other players off the bench to be successful this season.
“Ellie will play a different role than the past two seasons,” Riddle said. “Madison can score, but we will need to get her the ball in the right spots. We need other players, like Oliva Norton, Brandi Meredith and Kylie Carr, to come off the bench and make contributions.”
Bald Knob led 11-4 midway through the first quarter before the Lady Panthers made their move. Hailey Bresnahan connected on a 3-pointer and Hooten scored as Heber Springs pulled to within two points.
Clemons hit a 3-pointer for a 12-11 lead as the Lady Panthers never trailed again. Clemons connected on a 3-pointer and Riddle scored for a 17-11 lead going into the second quarter.
The Lady Panthers outscored Bald Knob 7-6 during the second quarter for a 24-17 halftime lead.
Heber Springs gained its first double-digit lead at 30-20 midway through the third quarter. The Lady Bulldogs didn’t go away and pulled to within six points. The Lady Panthers finished by scoring six unanswered points and took a 40-28 into the fourth quarter.
It will be a busy week as the Lady Panthers were scheduled to play at Newport Tuesday and will host Central Arkansas Christian on Thursday.
“We need to get into game shape and the best way is to play games,” Riddle said. “I’m glad we are playing three games this week. You can work on conditioning in practice, but it’s hard to simulate it in a game. The best way to improve conditioning is playing games. We will get there. I’m just exciting that the team is playing.”
A tale of two halves best described Friday’s 2-4A Conference football game between Bald Knob and Heber Springs at Panther Stadium.
The Panthers (0-4 conference, 1-6 overall) led 7-0 at halftime, but the Bulldogs (2-2 conference, 5-3 overall) dominated the second half for a 35-15 win and spoiled Heber Springs’ homecoming.
Bald Knob scored touchdowns after four Heber Springs turnovers and outgained the Panthers, 238-92 in the second half. The Panthers compiled 61 of their 92 yards during the second half on the final possession, which ended with a touchdown.
Heber Springs had six turnovers for the game — four interceptions and two fumbles, including an onside kickoff. The Bulldogs finished with a 341-203 advantage in total offense.
“Bald Knob beat us on the line of scrimmage,” Heber Springs coach Todd Wood said. “They knew that they could run the ball against us, which opened up their passing game. We couldn’t move the ball in the second half.”
Bald Knob quarterback Leason Pierce completed 13-of-23 passes for 156 yards and three touchdowns. Pierce was only 2-of-6 passing for 24 yards in the first half.
“The defense played well in the first half,” Wood said. “Bald Knob’s size on the line wore us down in the second half.”
Heber Springs held Bald Knob to 1-of-6 third-down conversions in the first half. The Bulldogs turned the tables in the final two quarters by converting 5-of-7 third-down plays.
The Panthers had 3-of-6 third down conversions in the first half and 3-of-5 in the second half. Heber Springs was 2-of-2 during its final scoring drive. Bald Knob was successful on 2-of-8 fourth down plays, while the Panthers were 0-of-4.
“Our guys were still trying to keep battling,” Wood said. “The big issue were the turnovers and not adjusting to quick changes. We must learn how to fight through that. You can’t win games with that many turnovers.”
Heber Springs quarterback Matthew Cook completed 13-of-27 passes for 91 yards with four interceptions. Nathan McKee caught seven passes for 38 yards. Diego Rubio had 35 yards rushing on eight carries and scored one touchdown.
“We had a good drive on our first possession of the game,” Wood said. “Cook was playing with a lot of confident, but all of the sudden, he gets pressured by Bald Knob’s defense. Matthew looked at things he didn’t need to be looking at. We got to help him correct that. I need to figure out what we need to do to help him do his job better. The first drive was nice, but we didn’t have much success for the rest of the game.”
Heber Springs drove 51 yards on nine plays following the opening kickoff. Cook connected on a 16-yard pass to Easton Cusick, Rubio ran for 10 yards and McKee caught a 13-yard pass for a first-and-goal at the Bald Knob 8-yard line.
Two plays later, Cook scored on a 2-yard carry with 8:51 left in the first quarter. Gus Hannah kicked the extra point for the 7-0 lead.
Bald Knob’s only first-half scoring threat came on its final possession. The Bulldogs drove from their 31 to the Panther 20-yard line. Bald Knob’s Marcus McGahee missed a 37-yard field goal on the final play as Heber Springs led 7-0 at halftime.
Michael Wingo intercepted a Cook pass and set up Bald Knob’s first touchdown during the third quarter. The Bulldogs needed six plays to go 39 yards with Wingo scoring on a 24-yard run. McGahee kicked the extra point to tie the game at 7-7 with 5:23 left.
Bald Knob regained possession on a sack of Cook, who fumbled, and the Bulldogs recovered at the Heber Springs 20-yard line. Pierce completed the short drive by passing 13 yards to Wingo for the touchdown. McGahee added the conversion for the 14-7 lead.
The Bulldogs recovered an onside kickoff and later scored their third touchdown of the third quarter. Dane Lindsey caught a 19-yard pass from Pierce, increasing the lead to 20-7 going into the fourth quarter.
“We knew the onside kick was coming and practiced on it during the week,” Wood said. “You have to be aware where you are on the field and what you need to do in that situation. Bald Knob executed, and we didn’t.”
Bald Knob scored two more touchdowns in the fourth quarter. Pierce passed 38 yards to Josh Clark for a score with 10:46 to go. Clark had a 6-yard touchdown run with 4:27 left.
McGahee ran for a 2-point conversion and then kicked an extra point, increasing Bald Knob’s lead to 35-7.
Jackson West capped a 10-play, 59-yard drive for the Panthers scoring on a 3-yard carry with 24 seconds to play. Hannah ran for the 2-point conversion.
Heber Springs will seek to rebound at Southside Batesville on Friday.
“Southside is another good team that has a big line and likes to runs the ball,” Wood said. “We must find a way to keep our defense from playing most of the time on the field and get the offense going. We took a step backwards against Bald Knob. We need to find out what we did wrong and fix it by Friday.”
Bald Knob (4-3, 2-2) 0 0 20 15 - 35
Heber Springs (1-6, 0-4) 7 0 0 8 - 15
Heber Springs, Matthew Cook 2-yard run (Gus Hannah kick), 8:57
Bald Knob, Michael Wingo 3-yard (Marcus McGahee kick), 5:22
Bald Knob, Leason Pierce to Wingo 13-yard pass (McGahee kick), 3:20
Bald Knob, Pierce to Dane Lindsey 19-yard pass (kick failed), 1:06
Bald Knob, Pierce to Josh Clark 38-yard pass (McGahee run), 10:46
Bald Knob, Clark 6-yard run (McGahee kick), 4:27
Heber Springs, Jackson West 3-yard run (Hannah run), 28.4
TEAM STATS First Downs by Rush: Heber Springs 5, Bald Knob 11
First Downs by Pass: Heber Springs 8, Bald Knob 5
First Downs by Penalty: Heber Springs 0, Bald Knob 1
Total First Downs: Heber Springs 13, Bald Knob 17
Third-Down Conversions: Heber Springs 6/11, Bald Knob 6/13
Fourth-Down Conversions: Heber Springs 0/4, Bald Knob 1/6
Red-Zone Conversions: Heber Springs 2/2, Bald Knob 4/5
Time of Possession: Heber Springs 18:21, Bald Knob 29:39
Fumbles/Lost: Heber Springs 3/2, Bald Knob 0/0
Turnovers: Heber Springs 6, Bald Knob 0
Points Off Turnovers: Heber Springs 0, Bald Knob 27
Penalties: Heber Springs 4/53, Bald Knob 5/34
Rushing: Heber Springs 24/67/2.8, Bald Knob 43/185/4.3
Passing: Heber Springs 17/31-136-0/4, Bald Knob 13/23-156-3/0
Plays/Total Offense/YPP: Heber Springs 41/203/5.0, Bald Knob 66/341/5.2
Sacks/Yards Lost: Heber Springs 1/8, Bald Knob 2/7
Punts: Heber Springs 2/43/21.5, Bald Knob 0/0
Inside 20: Heber Springs 0, CAC 0
INDIVIDUAL STATS OFFENSERUSHING: Heber Springs, Diego Rubio 8/35, Jackson West 6/16/1, Matthew Cook 8/11/1, Easton Cusick 2/5. Bald Knob, Bradyn Cline 14/90, Josh Clark 10/62/1, Leason Pierce 8/25, Michael Wingo 6/14/1, Marcus McGahee 4/14, Team 1/(-6).
PASSING: Heber Springs, Matthew Cook 13/27-91-0/4, John McBroome 4/4-45-0/0. Bald Knob, Leason Pierce 13/23-156-3/0.
RECEIVING: Heber Springs, Nathan McKee 7/42, Easton Cusick 2/32, Austin Winchester 2/26, Dakota Farmer 2/19, Diego Rubio 2/5, Gus Hannah 1/11, Jackson West 1/1. Bald Knob, Dane Lindsey 5/36/1, Michael Wingo 3/17/1, Matthew Smith 2/32/1, Josh Clark 1/38/1, Gage Dismuke 1/24, Elijah Bradley 1/9.
TOTAL OFFENSE: Heber Springs, Matthew Cook 102, John McBroome 45, Diego Rubio 35, Jackson West 16, Easton Cusick 5. Bald Knob, Leason Pierce 181, Bradyn Cline 90, Josh Clark 62, Michael Wingo 14, Marcus McGahee 14, Team (-6).
PUNT RETURNS: None
KICK RETURNS: Heber Springs, Nathan McKee 2/45, Diego Rubio 1/17. Bald Knob, Dane Lindsey 1/7, Hayden McAnelly 1/0.
FUMBLE RETURNS: Bald Knob, Travis Kersey 1/15
INTERCEPTION RETURNS: Bald Knob, Michael Wingo 2/24, Matthew Smith 1/21
ALL-PURPOSE YARDS: Heber Springs, Nathan McKee 87, Diego Rubio 57, Easton Cusick 37, Austin Winchester 26, Dakota Farmer 19, Jackson West 17, Matthew Cook 11, Gus Hannah 11. Bald Knob, Josh Clarke 100, Bradyn Cline 90, Michael Wingo 55, Matthew Smith 53, Dane Lindsey 43, Leason Pierce 25, Gage Dismuke 24, Marcus McGahee 14, Elijah Bradley 9.
SCORING: Heber Springs, Matthew Cook 6, Jackson West 6, Gus Hannah 3 (1/1 XPA). Bald Knob, Michael Wingo 12, Josh Clark 12, Dane Lindsey 6, Marcus McGahee 5 (4/5 XPA, 0/1 FGA. Missed 37).
DEFENSEPUNTS/YARDS/AVERAGE/INSIDE THE 20: Heber Springs, Matthew Cook 2/43/21.5
SACKS/YARDS LOST: Heber Springs, Preston Roberson/Matthew Cook 1/8. Bald Knob, Travis Kersey 2/7
FUMBLE RECOVERIES: Bald Knob, Travis Kersey, Marcus McGahee
INTERCEPTIONS: Bald Knob, Michael Wingo 2, Matthew Smith 1, Josh Clark 1
Heber Springs will look to put all of the pieces together for an entire game as the Panthers will host Bald Knob for homecoming in a 2-4A Conference football game at 7 p.m. Friday.
Homecoming festivities are scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m., with the crowning of queen Hope Evans.
After losses to the three teams tied for the conference lead, Heber Springs (0-3 conference, 1-5 overall) will meet Bald Knob (1-2 conference, 4-3 overall), which will try and bounce back from last week’s 45-8 loss at Stuttgart.
The Panthers trailed fourth place Southside Batesville, Little Rock Mills and the Bulldogs by one game in the conference standings.
“The players were disappointed with the loss to Central Arkansas Christian (35-14),” Heber Springs coach Todd Wood said. “We trailed by seven points with eight minutes left in the game. After the game, I challenged the players to play at a higher level against Bald Knob.”
Wood said the players had three of their best practices all season during the week and believes it will carry over to Friday’s game.
“We had a better attitude and showed more spirit during practices,” he said. “I was pleased with the effort. I hope that effort will continue.”
Bald Knob features a run-oriented attack. Wood said one of the keys to success for the Heber Springs defense is to win the battle at the line of scrimmage.
“Bald Knob is a spread team that likes to run the ball,” Wood said. “We must make sure we have enough guys in the area to contain the run and force them to pass. The quarterback makes good decisions, and the running back is talented. The offensive line is big and strong.”
The Bulldogs play a 3-4 scheme on defense with the team’s strength at linebacker.
“Bald Knob’s defense is versatile,” Wood said. “The two outside linebackers will put pressure on the quarterback. They also react well in stopping the run. The defensive line is big and plays physical.”
Diego Rubio became the first Panther to rush for 100 yards in a game this season against CAC. Rubio had 143 yards on 10 carries, including a 58-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.
The passing game was effective as quarterback Matthew Cook completed 19-of-29 passes for 149 yards. Nathan McKee led the receivers with eight catches for 65 yards.
“We keep building every week,” Wood said. “We are adding new plays and building on having more success. Cook stepped in and played well at quarterback and took charge of the offense. Diego is a hard runner and was able to get loose a few times last week.”
Wood said the defense also keeps improving, and he expects a good performance against Bald Knob.
“We know our roles better,” he said when asked about the defense’s improvement. “The key against Bald Knob, like last week, is winning the line of scrimmage.”
Wood said Preston Roberson and Thad Bray have played well on the defensive line, and a new player emerged against CAC.
“Roberson has played steady at end,” Wood said. “Bray plays aggressive and gets into the backfield. Jayden Bremmon had one of his best game against CAC. Bremmon showed the ability to move well and uses his hands to gain leverage.”
Wood also likes the play of the linebackers.
“(Kenan) Sneed has the ability to get to the ball. Jackson West has played well, along with Diego at the inside linebackers. Our secondary is improving.”
Wood hopes homecoming will give the team an emotional boost.
“Homecoming always is a double-edge,” Wood said. “I expect them to come out and play with a full effort.”
2-4A CONFERENCE STANDINGS
W L CP W L PS PA
Stuttgart 3 0 39 5 0 207 26
Lonoke 3 0 33 5 1 233 132
Central Arkansas Christian 3 0 31 6 0 202 111
Southside Batesville 1 2 13 2 4 120 198
Bald Knob 1 2 6 3 3 144 136
Little Rock Mills 1 2 11 2 4 146 174
Heber Springs 0 3 0 1 5 113 220
Clinton 0 3 0 0 6 137 285
Friday, October 9
Central Arkansas Christian 35, Heber Springs 14
Little Rock Mills 46, Clinton 35
Lonoke 52, Southside Batesville 21
Stuttgart 45, Bald Knob 8
Friday, October 16
Bald Knob at Heber Springs
Central Arkansas Christian at Southside Batesville
Little Rock Mills at Lonoke
Stuttgart at Clinton
Kickoff: 7 p.m. Panther Stadium
Radio/Streaming: Billy Morgan with handle the play-by-play with Lance Hamilton providing color on KSUG 101.9 The Lake. Panther Pregame begins at 6:30 p.m. followed by the game.
THE SERIES: Bald Knob leads 37-23-2
SERIES HISTORY: This will be the 63rd time these two schools have meet on the football field. Heber Springs and Bald Knob first played during the 1929 season, a 26-2, Panther victory. It would be 11 more seasons before the two teams played again, a 1940 12-0 victory by Heber Springs. Heber Springs would win the first three games in the series before Bald Knob would win 18 out of 20 games played (a 1950 34-13 win by the Panthers broke a five-game losing streak in the series while a 1964 12-7 win broke a 10-game losing streak). The series would be fairly even before Heber Springs won eight straight from 1976 through 1983 before the Bulldogs closed out the 1980s winning six-in-a-row. In the 1990s, the teams would meet seven times with the Panthers getting wins during the 1990 and 1999 seasons. Since the 2005 season, Heber Springs and Bald Knob have played nine times with the Panthers winning seven of those contests, including 34-7 last season.
BALD KNOB – Heber Springs overcame a sluggish start to improve to 5-1 on the season with a 29-8 victory over Bald Knob in junior high football action Thursday night.
The Panthers, 3-1 in 2-4A play, trailed 8-7 late in the first half before scoring 22 unanswered to pull away from the Bulldogs. Liam Buffalo, who was 19 of 27 passing for 288 yards and four touchdowns, hit Parker Brown over the middle for a 57-yard scoring strike with 35.4 seconds left in the half. Buffalo connected with Xander Lindley for the 2-point pass to give Heber Springs a 15-7 advantage at the break.
From that point on, the Panther defense took control.
Bald Knob finished the night with 192 yards of total offense on the night, with the majority of that came in the first half, but Heber Springs limited the Bulldogs to 22 yards in the second half and forced three Bald Knob turnovers over that span (fumble recoveries by Axley Davis and Hayden Johnson, and an interception by Dalton Yancey).
Yancey’s interception set up the first score of the second half for the Panthers. Taking over on their own 32, Heber Springs used an 11-play, 68-yard drive to go up 22-8 when Buffalo connected with Yancey for a 3-yard touchdown pass with 42.6 seconds left in the quarter. Gideon Tate, who was three-for-three on PAT kicks on the night, kicked the extra point to make it 22-8. Buffalo was nine of 10 passing on the drive using five different receivers (Tate, Hud Haggard, Brown, Lindley and Yancey – who also had a first-half fumble recovery).
Another turnover set up the next score for Heber Springs in the fourth quarter, Brown sacked Bald Knob quarterback James Holder forcing the fumble. Johnson picked up the ball but was tripped up after a seven-yard return to put the ball on the Bulldog 34.
Heber Springs showed a different look on the next drive with Brown lined up in the “Wildcat” formation. A 12- and 8-yard run by Brown moved the ball to the Bulldog 14. A backwards pass attempt to Buffalo was mishandled on third down forcing a fourth-and-14 from the Bald Knob. But on fourth down, Buffalo took the snap connected with Lindley for the 26-yard touchdown pass.
Lindley finished the night six receptions for 104 yards and two touchdowns, including a 13-yard reception with 2:02 left in the first quarter that put Heber Springs up 7-0.
Bald Knob’s score came with 1:26 left in the first half as Holder connected with Garrett Swindle for an 8-yard touchdown pass. Javen Smith ran in the 2-point conversion.
The Panthers finished with 300 yards of total offense on the night. Brown led Heber Springs with 127 all-purpose yards (79 receiving, 21 rushing and 27 returns).
Bald Knob’s Jameson Hillis led all rushers with 75 yards on 20 carries. But as a team, the Bulldogs finished the night with 67 yards on the ground on 28 attempts.
Heber Springs will host Southside Batesville on Thursday at Panther Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.
BALD KNOB – The Heber Springs Panther Cubs improved to 4-2 on the season with a 28-14 victory over Bald Knob Thursday night.
Heber Springs struck first as Jacob Haskett scored on an 11-yard run with 14:42 left in the first half. The 2-point pass failed as the Panther Cubs led 6-0.
Heber Springs would scored again to go up 14-0 with 3:55 left in the first half as Emmett Dwyer connected with Haskett for a short-pass completion with Haskett doing the rest racing past several Bulldog defenders for a 91-yard touchdown. Dwyer connected with Eli Buffalo for the 2-point conversion.
Bald Knob pulled to within a score early in the second half as Bulldog quarterback Dakota Shoebottom broke a pair of tackles and rambled 69 yards for a touchdown with 18:51 left in the half. The 2-point pass failed.
Heber Springs would go up 22-6 with 12:50 left as Dwyer found Cooper Holmes for a 60-yard touchdown pass. Dwyer would run in the 2-point conversion.
Dyce Young recovered a Bald Knob fumble on the Bulldogs next possession, but the Panthers turned the ball over ending that scoring threat.
Heber Springs added another score on a 5-yard touchdown run by Eli Buffalo with 3:59 left. The 2-point conversion failed.
Bald Knob added a late score to settle the final score as Shoebottom scrambled for a 58-yard touchdown run with 1:18 left. Shoebottom connected with Kaden Posey for the 2-point conversion.
Heber Springs returns to action on Thursday when it hosts Southside Batesville.
Heber Springs turns the lights out on Bald Knob, 34-7
October 18, 2019
BALD KNOB – Heber Springs set the tone on its first possession and kept it going until the final whistle with a convincing 34-7 victory over Bald Knob Friday night.
The win by the Panthers improved their record to 2-5 on the season, but more importantly moved their conference mark to 2-2 on the year keeping their playoff hopes alive.
Heber Springs won the toss and took the football to start the game. Taking over on their own 15, the Panthers put together one of their best drives of the season marching downfield with a mixture of Adam Martin through the air and Julio Rubio on the ground. Rubio carried the ball six times on the drive for 32 yards while Martin complete seven of eight pass attempts for 60 yards including the last one of the drive, a 10-yard scoring strike to junior Matthew Cook. That play capped off a 15-play, 85-yard drive that took almost five minutes off the first quarter clock.
Bald Knob appeared to be poised to respond after Tyrese Dinwiddie returned the kickoff 24 yards to the Bulldog 42. Six plays later, Bald Knob had a first-and-Goal from the Panther 10, but the Panther defense stiffened forcing a turnover on downs at the 1.
Martin was able to coax Bald Knob to jump offsides twice, in-between an eight-yard run by Rubio, to push the ball to the Panther 19. Heber Springs then continued to chew up clock and march the ball downfield on a 13-play, 99-yard drive that Rubio capped off with a 2-yard touchdown run with 11:32 to play in the first half. Jackson Harrod kicked the PAT to make it 14-0. The big plays both came on third as Rubio ran 26 yards from the Bald Knob 41 to the 15. After a holding penalty, Martin converted another third down by hitting Nathan McKee for a 15-yard completion.
Bald Knob again reached the Panther red zone on its ensuing possession with a 13-play, 62-yard drive, but again the Heber Springs’ defense stiffened forcing another turnover on downs at the Panther 3.
Disaster almost struck on the ensuing Panther possession as Martin was intercepted at the 32 by Colton Collins, who returned the ball to the Panther 17. Yet again, the Heber Springs defense rose to the challenge stopping the Bulldogs pushing them back to Panther 23, thanks in part to intentional grounding call on the Bulldog quarterback on third down.
The Panthers took over on their own 18 with 3:04 left in the half and used a 11-play drive to go up 21-0 with 24.9 seconds left in the first half as Landon Johnson ran the ball in from the 3. The big play on the drive came early as the Panthers faced a third-and-6 from the Panther 22 when Martin found Fate Berry for a 20-yard completion. Martin also connected with McKee for gains of 8, 11 and 13 yards with the latter moving the ball to the Bulldog where Johnson ran the ball in.
After a 41-yard kickoff return to start the second half, Bald Knob quickly got on the board to make it game again with a six-play, 45-yard drive that Josh Clark finished off with a 3-yard run with 9:27 to play in the third quarter.
But Heber Springs responded on its first possession of the second stanza with Diego Rubio setting the tone. The junior returned the kickoff from the Panther 27 to the Bulldog 49. Seven players later, Martin connected with Landon Johnson for a 5-yard touchdown pass with 7:08 to play in the third. The snap was high on the PAT attempt. The big play came on third down from the Bulldog 37 when Martin scrambled for a 15-yard gain and was hit by Bulldog defender after he had stepped out of bounds.
The score would remain 27-7 until late in the contest when Kaden Hughes blocked a Bulldog punt giving the Panthers a short field at the Bald Knob 14. Five plays later, Landon Johnson ran the ball in from the 2 for his third score of the night to make it 34-7 with 2:30 to play.
PANTHER COACH WILL COX
HEBER SPRINGS’ FATE BERRY
HEBER SPRINGS’ JULIO RUBIO
HEBER SPRINGS ALMA MATER
BLOCKED PUNT: Heber Springs recorded its first blocked punt of the season when Kaden Hughes was able to get to Bald Knob punter Leason Pierce. The Panthers didn’t recover the loose ball, but did take over deep in Bulldog territory leading to Heber Springs’ final score.
CENTURY MARK: Julio Rubio rushed for 166 yards, his third time this season to rush for 100 yards or more. His tied for the team lead with Adam Martin.
CLOSING THE GAP: The Panthers win was the 23rd time Heber Springs has defeated Bald Knob. The Bulldogs still lead the all-time series, 37-23-2, but Heber Springs has won seven out of the last nine meetings.
THIRD-DOWN: After struggling in conference play on third-down conversions, Heber Springs was 10 of 14 against Bald Knob. It was the Panthers highest conversion rate since their final nonconference contest against Harding Academy.
RED-ZONE DEFENSE: Opponents had scored 20 out of 24 times (87 percent) when they reached inside the Panther 20-yard line. Friday night against Bald Knob, Heber Springs held the Bulldogs to one score out of five trips into the Panther red zone.
TURNOVERS: Heber Springs recorded one turnover Friday night. On the season, the Panthers are -10 in takeaways.
Heber Springs (2-2, 2-5) 7 14 6 7 - 34
Bald Knob (2-2, 2-5) 0 0 7 0 - 7
Heber Springs - Adam Martin to Matthew Cook 10-yard pass (Jackson Harrod kick), 7:03
Heber Springs - Julio Rubio 2-yard run (Harrod kick)
Heber Springs - Landon Johnson 3-yard run (Harrod kick)
Bald Knob - Josh Clark 3-yard run (Brendan Roberts kick). 9:27
Heber Springs - Martin to Landon Johnson 4-yard pass (pass failed), 7:08
Heber Springs - Landon Johnson 2-yard run (Harrod kick), 2:30
First Downs by Rush: Heber Springs 12, Bald Knob 12
First Downs by Pass: Heber Springs 9, Bald Knob 2
First Downs by Penalty: Heber Springs 0, Bald Knob 0
Total First Downs: Heber Springs 21, Bald Knob 13
Third-Down Conversions: Heber Springs 10/14, Bald Knob 4/10
Fourth-Down Conversions: Heber Springs 1/2, Bald Knob 0/4
Red-Zone Possessions: Heber Springs 5/6, Bald Knob 1/5
Time of Possession: Heber Springs 24:38, Bald Knob 23:22
Fumbles/Lost: Heber Springs 1/0, Bald Knob 0/0
Turnovers: Heber Springs 1, Bald Knob 0
Points Off Turnovers: Heber Springs 0, Bald Knob 0
Penalties/Yards: Heber Springs 5/40, Bald Knob 7/58
Plays/Total Offense/YPP: Heber Springs 68/434/6.4, Bald Knob 60/239/3.9
Rushing: Heber Springs 43/249/5.8, Bald Knob 44/207/4.7
Passing: Heber Springs 18/25-185-2/1, Bald Knob 7/16-32-0/0
Sacks/Yards Lost: Heber Springs 0/0, Bald Knob 0/0
Punts: Heber Springs 1/48/48, Bald Knob 2/36/18
Punts Inside 20: Heber Springs 0, Blad Knob 0
Blocked Punts: Heber Springs 1
OFFENSERUSHING: Heber Springs, Julio Rubio 23/166/7.2, Landon Johnson 10/32/3.2, Adam Martin 8/48/6, Diego Rubio 1/2/2, Levy Phillips 1/1. Bald Knob, Josh Clark 16/63/3.9, Johnson Capps 9/66/7.3, Bradyn Cline 8/40/5, Marcus McGahee 5/34/6.8, Leason Pierce 4/23, Team 2/(-19).
RUSHING RUNS OF 40+: Heber Springs, Julio Rubio (1)
RUSHING RUNS OF 30+: Heber Springs, Julio Rubio (1)
RUSHING RUNS OF 20+: Heber Springs, Julio Rubio (2). Bald Knob, Johnson Capps (1), Marcus McGahee (1).
RUSHING RUNS OF 10+: Heber Springs, Julio Rubio (5), Adam Martin (2). Bald Knob Johnson Capps (2), Josh Clark (1), Marcus McGahee (1).
PASSING: Heber Springs, Adam Martin 18/25-185-2/1. Bald Knob, Johnson Capps 6/14-35-0/0, Leason Pierce 1/2-(-3)-0/0.
RECEIVING: Heber Springs, Nathan McKee 7/67, Matthew Cook 4/25, Landon Johnson 3/31, Fate Berry 2/34, Jackson West 1/18, Tri Johnson 1/10. Bald Knob, Tyrese Dinwiddie 4/12, Colton Collins 1/18, Josh Clark 1/5, Matthew Smith 1/(-3).
TOTAL OFFENSE: Heber Springs, Adam Martin 233, Julio Rubio 166, Landon Johnson 32, Diego Rubio 2, Levy Phillips 1. Bald Knob, Johnson Capps 101, Josh Clark 63, Bradyn Cline 40, Marcus McGahee 34, Leason Pierce 20, Team (-19).
PUNT RETURNS: None
KICK RETURNS: Heber Springs, Diego Rubio 1/24, Hunter Kent 1/-4. Bald Knob, Josh Clark 2/53, Tyrese Dinwiddie 3/52, Colton Collins 1/11.
FUMBLE RETURNS: None
INTERCEPTION RETURNS: Bald Knob, Colton Collins 1/15
ALL-PURPOSE YARDS: Heber Springs, Julio Rubio 166, Nathan McKee 67, Landon Johnson 63, Adam Martin 48, Fate Berry 34, Diego Rubio 26, Matthew Cook 25, Jackson West 18, Tri Johnson 10, Levy Phillips 1, Hunter Kent (-4).
DEFENSE TACKLES (Shared/Solo/Total): Heber Springs, Fate Berry 7/5/12, Landon Johnson 11/1/12, Nathan McKee 6/2/8, Kaden Hughes 3/4/7, Hunter Kent 6/1/7, Jackson West 5/1/6, Diego Rubio 4/1/5, Nicholas Hitchcock 3/2/5, Levy Phillips 3/1/4, Lawrence Baureis 3/0/3, Preston Jones 2/0/2, Devon Doxey 1/1/2, Dalton McCollum 1/0/1, Trent Barnes 1/0/1.
TACKLES FOR LOSS: Heber Springs, Kaden Hughes 2, Landon Johnson 1, Devon Doxey 1.
SACKS/YARDS LOST: None
INTERCEPTIONS: Bald Knob, Colton Collins 1
PUNTING: Heber Springs, Adam Martin 1/48/48. Bald Knob, Leason Pierce 1/36/36, Team 1/0/0.
PUNTS INSIDE 20: None
BLOCKED PUNTS: Heber Springs, Kaden Hughes 1
PLAYOFFS: Riverview is the only team from the conference that has clinched a playoff spot leaving four more up for grabs. Riverview can clinch a share of its first ever football conference title with a win against Bald Knob at home and a Heber Springs win against Southside Batesville. No teams have been eliminated from playoff contention so far, but that could change Friday night if Stuttgart falls to Little Rock Mills.
W L CP W L PS PA
Riverview 4 0 36 6 1 246 189
Southside Batesville 3 1 28 5 2 220 176
Lonoke 2 2 15 3 4 211 227
Heber Springs 2 2 14 2 5 177 203
Bald Knob 2 2 8 2 5 113 212
Little Rock Mills 2 2 8 3 4 145 172
Central Arkansas Christian 1 3 13 3 4 206 187
Stuttgart 0 4 0 0 7 190 258
Friday, October 18
Heber Springs 34, Bald Knob 7
Southside Batesville 21, Central Arkansas Christian 19
Little Rock Mills 14, Lonoke 9
Riverview 41, Stuttgart 38
Friday, October 25
Heber Springs at Southside Batesville
Stuttgart at Little Rock Mills
Central Arkansas Christian at Lonoke
Bald Knob at Riverview
Friday, November 1
Bald Knob at Central Arkansas Christian
Riverview at Heber Springs
Stuttgart at Lonoke
Little Rock Mills at Southside Batesville
Thursday, November 7
Lonoke at Riverview
Friday, November 8
Bald Knob at Southside Batesville
Heber Springs at Little Rock Mills
Central Arkansas Christian at Stuttgart
Xander Lindley rushed for a touchdown and was on the receiving end of another as Heber Springs defeated Bald Knob, 20-0.
Heber Springs improved to 2-4 on the season with the win and will travel to Southside Batesville on Thursday looking for its third consecutive win.
Ryan Bommarito paced the Panthers on the ground with 17 carries for 54 yards and a touchdown, a 2-yard run that put the Panthers up early.
After Heber Springs was forced to punt on its first possession, Conner Riddle picked off a Bald Knob pass attempt and returned it 23 yards to the Panther 43.
From there, Heber Springs marched down the field with a heavy dose of Bommarito on an 11-play drive that ninth-grader capped with a 2-yard run with 2:42 to play in the half. Bommarito carried the ball nine times on the drive. His 2-point run made it 8-0.
Heber Springs got the ball back after Tripp Young forced the Bald Knob ball carrier to cough up the football and Chris Roberts pounced on the ball with 50.2 seconds left in the half at the Bulldog 32.
The ensuing drive appeared to stall at 24 before the Panthers were able to draw Bald Knob offsides on fourth-and-2. On the next play, Riddle connected with Lindley for a 19-yard touchdown with 31.1 seconds in the half. The 2-point conversion failed.
Heber Springs scored its final points of the contest on its first possession of the second half as Lindley took the ball at the Panther 37 and raced 63 yards for the score with 3:14 left in the third quarter.
The Heber Springs seventh-grade football team broke a two-game skid with a 20-0 victory over Bald Knob at Panther Stadium.
The Panthers got on the scoreboard in the first half when Liam Buffalo connected with Weston Warden for a 10-yard pass. Buffalo ran in the 2-point conversion, the Panthers first successful 2-point conversion this season, to make it 8-0 with just over nine minutes left in the first half.
Heber Springs added to its advantage with just over 14 minutes left in the contest when Buffalo found Bryce Seigrest for a 30-yard touchdown pass to make it 16-0 after the successful 2-point conversion.
The Panthers tacked on another scored with 10:23 to go when Buffalo raced 21 yards to set the final score at 22-0.
Heber Springs (4-2) will travel to face Southside Batesville at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday.
Radio: Billy Morgan with handle the play-by-play with Lance Hamilton providing color on KSUG 101.9 The Lake. Panther Pregame begins at 6:30 p.m. followed by the game. Listen Live Link.
Heber Springs struck first but Central Arkansas Christian responded back with 24 unanswered points in handing the Panthers a 24-6 setback at Panther Stadium. The six points scored by Heber Springs were the fewest it has scored in a game since the 2013 season. Bald Knob handed Stuttgart a 28-27 setback.
W L CP W L PS PA
Riverview 3 0 33 5 1 205 151
Southside Batesville 2 1 26 4 2 199 157
Lonoke 2 1 15 3 3 197 218
Bald Knob 2 1 8 2 4 106 178
Central Arkansas Christian 1 2 13 3 3 187 166
Little Rock Mills 1 2 3 2 4 131 163
Heber Springs 1 2 1 1 5 143 196
Stuttgart 0 3 0 0 6 152 217
Friday, October 11
Central Arkansas Christian 24, Heber Springs 6
Bald Knob 28, Stuttgart 27
Southside Batesville 48, Lonoke 21
Riverview 37, Little Rock Mills 27
Friday, October 18
Heber Springs at Bald Knob
Southside Batesville at Central Arkansas Christian
Lonoke at Little Rock Mills
Riverview at Stuttgart
HEBER SPRINGS COACH WILL COX
THE SERIES: Bald Knob leads 37-22-2
SERIES HISTORY: This will be the 62nd time these two schools have meet on the football field. Heber Springs and Bald Knob first played during the 1929 season, a 26-2, Panther victory. It would be 11 more seasons before the two teams played again, a 1940 12-0 victory by Heber Springs. Heber Springs would win the first three games in the series before Bald Knob would win 18 out of 20 games played (a 1950 34-13 win by the Panthers broke a five-game losing streak in the series while a 1964 12-7 win broke a 10-game losing streak). The series would be fairly even before Heber Springs won eight straight from 1976 through 1983 before the Bulldogs closed out the 1980s winning six-in-a-row. In the 1990s, the teams would meet seven times with the Panthers getting wins during the 1990 and 1999 seasons. Since the 2005 season, Heber Springs and Bald Knob have played eight times with the Panthers winning six of those contests.
CONFERENCE WOES: After putting up good offensive numbers in nonconference play, the offense has sputtered the past few weeks. Heber Springs is averaging 15.3 points in 4A-2 action with 293.7 yards of total offense (149.3 rushing/144.3) while converting only 8 out of 37 third-down attempts (21.6 percent). Part of the problem plaguing the offense has penalties, Heber Springs is averaging 11.7 penalties per game in conference play for a loss of 83.3 yards.
SIX YEARS, SIX POINTS: The six points scored by Heber Springs last week in a 24-6 loss to Central Arkansas Christian were the fewest points a Panther team has scored in game since the 2013 season, a 35-0 loss at Newport on October 18.
SLOW START: The 1-5 start by Heber Springs is the Panthers worst start to a season since the 2013 campaign, that team started the year at 1-5 and finished the season at 2-8. Since 1950, there have been 22 Panther teams to start the season 1-5 or worse, only one of those teams managed to win more than two games (the 1963 squad finished 3-7-1).
PLAYOFF SEEDINGS: The top two seeds out of the conference are paired with the 4A-8 conference (Crossett, DeWitt, Dumas, Hamburg, Helena-West Helena Central, Monticello, Star City and Warren) while the conference’s lower three seeds are paired with the 4A-1 conference (Shiloh Christian, Berryville, Gravette, Gentry, Green Forest, Lincoln, Pea Ridge and Prairie Grove). The No. 1 seed out of the 4A-2 hosts the No. 5 seed out of the 4A-8. The No. 2 seed hosts the No. 4 seed out of the 4A-8. The No. 3 seed hosts the No. 3 out of the 4A-1. The No. 4 seed travels to the No. 2 seed out of the 4A-1, while the No. 5 seed travels to No. 1 seed out of the 4A-1.
SENIOR SPOTLIGHT: TRI JOHNSON
Heber Springs 41 34 13 55 - 143 (23.8)
Opponent 25 56 62 53 - 196 (32.7)
TEAM First Downs by Rush: Heber Springs 65, Opponent 55
First Downs by Pass: Heber Springs 37, Opponent 43
First Downs by Penalty: Heber Springs 6, Opponent 6
Total First Downs: Heber Springs 108, Opponent 104
Third-Down Conversions: Heber Springs 36/78 (46.2), Opponent 20/62 (32.3)
Fourth-Down Conversions: Heber Springs 10/22 (45.5), Opponent 8/13 (61.5)
Red-Zone Conversions: Heber Springs 11/16 (11 tds), Opponent 20/23 (18 tds, 2 FG)
Fumbles/Lost: Heber Springs 10/8, Opponent 9/2
Turnovers: Heber Springs 14, Opponent 5
Points Off Turnovers: Heber Springs 13, Opponent 28
Penalties/Yards: Heber Springs 54/390, Opponent 42/366
Plays/Total Offense/YPP: Heber Springs 381/2228/5.9, Opponent 345/2013/5.8
Rushing: Heber Springs 257/1327/5.2, Opponent 232/1057/4.6
Rushing Per Game: Heber Springs 221.2, Opponent 176.2
Passing: Heber Springs 67/123-900-5/6, Opponent 81/133-994-12/3
Passing Per Game: Heber Springs 150, Opponent 165.7
Sacks/Yards Lost: Heber Springs 19/107, Opponent 9/44
Punts: Heber Springs 19/775/40.8, Opponent 23/828/36
INDIVIDUAL OFFENSE RUSHING (ATT/YARDS/PER ATTEMPT/PER GAME/TDS): Julio Rubio 110/551/5/91.8/10, Adam Martin 113/551/4.9/91.8/3, Landon Johnson 34/175/5.1/29.2/3, Nathan McKee 1/6/6/1/0, Tri Johnson 1/(-2)/(-2)/(-.4)/0.
BIG CAT RUNS (50+): Adam, Martin 1, Julio Rubio 1
RUNS OF 40+: Adam Martin 1, Julio Rubio 1
RUNS OF 30+: Julio Rubio 3, Adam Martin 2
RUNS OF 20+: Adam Martin 6, Julio Rubio 5, Landon Johnson 1
RUNS OF 10+: Adam Martin 17, Julio Rubio 13, Landon Johnson 4
100-YARD RUSHING GAMES: Adam Martin 3, Julio Rubio 2
PASSING (ATT/COMP-YARDS-TDS/INT): Adam Martin 67/123-900-5/6
250-YARD PASSING GAMES: Adam Martin 1
RECEIVING (REC/YARDS/PER CATCH/TDS): Matthew Cook 12/148/12.3, Tri Johnson 11/198/18/2, Julio Rubio 11/139/12.6, Nathan McKee 10/133/13.3/2, Fate Berry 10/141/14.1/1, Landon Johnson 7/79/11.3, Hunter Kent 5/46/9.2
100-YARD RECEIVING GAMES: Tri Johnson 1, Julio Rubio 1
TOTAL OFFENSE (OFFENSE/PER GAME): Adam Martin 1451/241.8, Julio Rubio 551/91.8, Landon Johnson 175/29.2, Nathan McKee 6/1.2, Tri Johnson (-2)/(.4)
KICKOFF RETURNS: Tri Johnson 8/170/21.3, Matthew Cook 4/62/15.5, Hunter Kent 3/46/15.3, Julio Rubio 3/44/14.7, Levy Phillips 2/14/7, Jackson West 2/11, Nathan McKee 1/11/11, Diego Rubio 1/13/13, Lawrence Baureis 1/10, Harley Bresnahan 1/ 6, Tristan Thissen 1/0.
PUNT RETURNS: Nathan McKee 3/12, Tri Johnson 1/(-3)
INTERCEPTION RETURNS: Nathan McKee 1/10, Dalton McCollum 1/4, Fate Berry 1/2
FUMBLE RETURNS: None
ALL-PURPOSE YARDS (YARDS/PER GAME): Julio Rubio 734/122.3, Adam Martin 551/91.8, Tri Johnson 363/72.6, Matthew Cook 210/35, Landon Johnson 254/42.3, Nathan McKee 172/28.7, Fate Berry 143/23.8, Hunter Kent 92/15.3, Levy Phillips 14/2.3, Diego Rubio 13/2.2, Jackson West 11/1.8, Lawrence Baureis 10/1.7, Harley Bresnahan 6/1, Dalton McCollum 4/.7,
DEFENSE TACKLES (ASST/SOLO/TOTAL): Fate Berry 43/18/61, Landon Johnson 29/19/48, Lawrence Baureis 17/9/26, Kaden Hughes 17/9/26, Diego Rubio 19/6/25, Hunter Kent 15/9/24, Matthew Cook 19/5/24, Levy Phillips 11/8/19, Nathan McKee 11/7/18, Tri Johnson 9/5/14, Harley Bresnhan 6/3/9, Dalton McCollum 4/4/8, Jackson West 6/2/8, Julio Rubio 6/1/7, Nicholas Hitchcock 5/2/7, Preston Jones 1/2/3, Tristan Thissen 1/2/3, Trent Barnes 1/1/2, Devon Doxey 2/0/2, Jackson Harrod 1/1/2, Harley Hannah 1/2/2, Spencer Evans 1/0/1, Gus Hannah 1/0/1.
TACKLES FOR LOSS: Landon Johnson 11.5, Fate Berry 11, Kaden Hughes 6.5, Nicholas Hitchcock 3.5, Lawrence Baureis 2, Levy Phillips 2, Tri Johnson 1.5, Diego Rubio 1, Lawrence Baureis 1, Harley Bresnahan 1.
SACKS/YARDS LOST: Fate Berry 4/28, Kaden Hughes 4/24, Tri Johnson 2.5/22, Levy Phillips 1/ 5, Harley Bresnahan 1/ 4, Diego Rubio 1/5, Julio Rubio .5/9, Landon Johnson .5/3, Matthew Cook .5/3, Nicholas Hitchcock .5/4.
INTERCEPTIONS: Dalton McCollum 1, Nathan McKee 1, Fate Berry 1
FUMBLE RECOVERIES: Nathan McKee 1, Landon Johnson 1
PUNTING (No./Yards/Avg./Inside20): Adam Martin 19/775/40.8/6
SCORING: Julio Rubio 72 (12 tds), Adam Martin 18 (3 td), Landon Johnson 18 (3 tds), Jackson Harrod 17 (17-18 PAT), Tri Johnson 12 (2 td), Nathan McKee 12 (2 td), Fate Berry 6 (1 td)
SENIOR SPOTLIGHT: KADEN HUGHES
MARKEDTIME.COM PLAYERS OF WEEK
WEEK 6 vs. CAC
OFFENSE – Julio Rubio. DEFENSE – Kaden Hughes
WEEK 5 vs. STUTTGART
OFFENSE – Adam Martin. DEFENSE – Nathan McKee
WEEK 4 vs. LONOKE
OFFENSE – Fate Berry. DEFENSE – Landon Johnson
WEEK 3 vs. HARDING ACADEMY
OFFENSE – Tri Johnson. DEFENSE – Dalton McCollum
WEEK 2 vs. GREENBRIER
OFFENSE – Harley Hannah. DEFENSE – Levy Phillips
WEEK 1 vs. CLINTON
OFFENSE – Adam Martin and Julio Rubio. DEFENSE – Fate Berry
The Heber Springs junior high football team claimed its first win of the season with a 22-12 victory over Central Arkansas Christian Thursday night at Mustang Mountain in North Little Rock. The Panthers set at 1-4 on the season.
The Heber Springs seventh-grade team fell to 3-2 on the year with a 30-0 setback to CAC on Thursday.
PANTHER SPORTS THIS WEEK
Saturday, October 19 – Cross Country at Hot Springs
Tuesday, October 22 – Volleyball at Morrilton, 4:30 p.m.
Thursday, October 24 – Volleyball vs. Conway St. Joseph, 4:30 p.m.
Thursday, October 24 – 7th-Grade Football vs. Southside Batesville, 5:30
Thursday, October 24 – Junior Football vs. Southside Batesville, 7 p.m.