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WYNNE HOLDS OFF BLUE DEVILS IN THE FOURTH QUARTER

Wynne holds off Blue Devils in the fourth quarter

BILLY WOODS

WM School District | 9/21/2019

PHOTO CREDIT: West Memphis High School Athletics

It wasn't the total yardage.

It may have seemed the Wynne Yellowjackets, and their option offense, was churning inconceivable yards on the West Memphis defense. But it came down to mistakes, in the end, for the Blue Devils.

Wynne senior quarterback Holden Parker threw for a touchdown, ran for a two-point conversion, kicked two field goals and saw two of his kickoffs leave the end zone as the Yellowjackets outlasted the Blue Devils 21-14 here Friday night.

Looking to gain some steam heading into their 6A-East Conference opener next Friday night at home against Marion, the Blue Devils kept charging back, twice taking the lead after falling behind.

But some dropped balls in the second half burned the Blue Devils (1-2)

"We made too many mistakes, but give Wynne the credit," said West Memphis head coach Billy Elmore. "They made the plays when they had to make them. We had the opportunities to win, but didn't get the job done."

The execution, overall, was better for West Memphis as the two comebacks attest. But Parker did it all, throwing a 15-yard touchdown pass with 10:38 to play in the fourth quarter to Devin Holmes to bring his team back from a 14-13 deficit.

Parker then ran for the two-point conversion to provide the final points.

"Holden played like he's capable of playing," said Wynne head coach Van Paschal. "He'd been playing good, but not as good as he's capable. He runs the option almost to perfection and when he needs to he can throw it. And you saw what kind of leg he has."

Parker gave his team a 3-0 lead on the 'Jackets' first possession of the night when he booted a 29-yard field goal.

But the Blue Devil offense looked its best all season on the running of Cedric Loving in the first half.

Loving gave his team its first lead when he bowled into the end zone from a yard out with 6:13 left to play in the second quarter. Colin Clark's PAT gave West Memphis a 7-3 lead.

"I think our offense looked better tonight, and we played harder," said Elmore.

Wynne put up 165 yards rushing in the first half, which is a season high given up by the Blue Devils in one half of play. But the defense kept Wynne out of the end zone through the first two quarters.

The visitors led 7-6 at halftime after Parker kicked a 46-yard field goal that probably would have been good from 56 yards.

Wynne took its second lead of the game at 13-7 when Marterius Ross ran 14 yards for a touchdown with 9:51 left in the third quarter.

But once again, the Blue Devil offense came charging back, this time with a different back carrying the load.

Dennis Dallas, who rushed for 71 second-half yards, was unstoppable through his first six carries. His first five carries of the second half went for 45 yards, but teammate Tyrique Thomas got the end zone honors when he scored a 2-yard TD with 6:42 left in the third quarter.

Clark once again split the uprights for a 14-13 West Memphis lead.

For the second straight week, the Blue Devil defense rallied in the second half to slow down a potent rushing attack.

The West Memphis defenders limited Wynne to only 86 yards on the ground in the second half.

But Parker, facing third and 1 from the West Memphis 15, threw to a wide open Holmes for a touchdown.

For the game, Parker was just 2 of 5 passing for 30 yards.

"It is what it is," Elmore added. "We're 1-2 heading into conference play next week. A new season starts, so we hope to be ready for it."

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