Saturday, September 12, 2009

SPORTS >> Old formation boosts Hornets by the Falcons

Leader sports writer

The North Pulaski Falcons kept it close for one half before Oak Grove went back to its traditional offense to post a 27-7 victory at Bobby Tiner Stadium on Friday.

The Hornets (1-1) spread the offense out in the first half, which resulted in a pair of miscues. But they went back to their tried-and-true wing T set in the second half and shut down the Falcons’ offense to take control.

“We sold everything to stop their power running game,” Oak Grove coach Mike Buchan said. “We kind of played basic with our pass defense because we were more concerned with that. Their fullback is about 260 pounds, and I don’t think we have anyone that big on our entire team.”

The Falcons’ only score came in the second quarter when junior Darrius Washington returned a kickoff 85 yards for a touchdown with 1:24 left until halftime. Matt Ingersol added the extra point to make the score 14-7.

For first-year North Pulaski coach Rick Russell, the small steps taken by his team were welcomed.

“We didn’t make as many mistakes tonight,” Russell said. “We had another interception, and they ran it back for a touchdown.

We have to quit making those types of mistakes. Our kicking game was better and our defense played a little better.”

Oak Grove running back Trooper Tolbert had a solid night for the Hornets with touchdown runs of 42 yards and 9 yards.

Sophomore defensive back Mikele Summons had the biggest defensive play of the game with an 89-yard interception return for a score with 1:38 left in the first half, and quarterback Duramis Sam started off the night with a 1-yard sneak for the other Hornets touchdown.

“We started running more trap and straight dive in the second half, and it worked out for us,” Buchan. “North Pulaski played hard and played physical, we just went back to our basic offense and was able to wear them down some.”

North Pulaski quarterback Syheim Barron was 7 of 15 passing for 105 yards. Darrious Cage had two receptions for 42 yards, while Arlando Hicks had 3 catches for 23 yards. The Falcons had 214 yards of total offense, while Oak Grove had 317 yards, 257 of which were rushing.

The Falcons, 0-2, and will play host to Little Rock Christian and standout running back Michael Dyer next week.

Dyer and the Warriors beat Oak Grove in the kickoff classic thanks in part to a late, touchdown-saving tackle by Dyer, considered one of the top college recruits in the state.