Junior Cougars Drop Weather Shortened Game
Rector fans wanted just a bit more time Thursday night as a powerful storm system first interrupted then halted junior high football action at Paul Temerian Field. Officials called the contest, as high-speed winds, lightning and even hail came through as part of the violent storm. The game ended as time ran out in the third quarter, with the Junior Thunderbirds of Cross County holding a 14-6 advantage over the Junior Cougars.
Rector had just scored before the contest was ended prematurely. Colby Stokes helped spark Rector's scoring drive with tough, power running from the backfield, but the arm of quarterback Hunter McNeely pushed the Junior Cougars into the end zone on a fourth-and-goal play from the two-yard-line with just 27 seconds remaining the frame, and ultimately, the contest. McNeely's pass hit an open Nick Mesa in the end zone for the touchdown. Mesa slid along briefly on his knees after making the kneeling catch, as the waterlogged ground greeted the young wide receiver. Rector attempted a two-point conversion, but the sloppy field made running in close quarters a difficult task.
Cross County scored on a one-yard touchdown with 3:55 left in the first quarter after play was delayed due to lightning and followed by pea-sized hail.
Cross County took advantage of another break, this being the end of the first quarter, to score again, breaking free for a 51-yard touchdown run. The conversion was halted, leaving the guests in front, 14-0.
The Junior Cougars went three-and-out on their following possession, but were able to apply pressure and contain the Cross County defense to bring the first half to a close. The momentum appeared to be shifting to Rector's advantage prior to their third frame touchdown, but another round of lightning brought the game to an early completion.
The Seventh Grade Cougars rolled to a 22-0 victory over Cross County prior to the start of the junior high game.
Max Ford got Rector off on the right foot, taking the ball away from the visitors with an interception in Cross County territory before breaking loose for a 40-yard touchdown run with 16:40 remaining in the first half.
Rector struck again in the first half, scoring on a reception by Shannon Patterson of a Parker Bucy pass. After making the catch, Patterson spun and dragged a defender 15 yards into the end zone on what was a 47-yard scoring effort, as Rector moved ahead 14-0.
The seventh graders added another thrilling score with a 70-yard touchdown romp by Max Ford to open the second half. Bucy hit Clayton Morgan with a pass to secure the conversion, leaving it 22-0 for the Seventh Grade Cougars.
Rector dominated both sides of the ball and controlled the line of scrimmage with stellar play from the offensive and defensive lines.
The Junior Cougars and the Seventh Grade Cougars will be in action at Earle Thursday. A seventh grade game will begin the contests at 5:30 p.m. with the junior high contest to follow.