Eagles soar past White Plains

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  By Gene Stanley/Sports Correspondent

That Rebel Yell you heard last night (Sept. 5) was the Hokes Bluff High football team celebrating its 35-7 win over White Plains in the region opener for both teams.

It also marked the end of a 15-game losing streak against Class 4A competition.

“I’m thrilled,” said Eagles coach Mike Robertson. “The kids worked hard for this and it’s good to see them get to enjoy it.”

Hokes Bluff opened the scoring on the first possession, driving 74 yards on 10 plays. The touchdown was netted by sophomore Camron Dowdy – a 15-yard scamper.

Early in the second quarter, Dowdy scored again, this time from one yard out. The Eagles were playing on a short field after Phillip Ward returned a punt 25 yards to the 34-yard line.

In fact, it was the Ward and Dowdy Show all game. 

Dowdy rushed for 135 yards and three touchdowns on 23 carries. He also intercepted a Wildcats pass.

Ward returned two punts for touchdowns – 77 yards and 55 yards – on consecutive second-half kicks. Ward also returned an interception 52 yards, setting up the final touchdown – a 5-yard run by Dowdy.

“Phillip Ward is a very good football player,” Robertson said. “And Dowdy is young but showing what he can do.”

At halftime, the Eagles were nursing a 14-7 lead, only to see Ward break it open midway through the third quarter.

White Plains had the ball to start the second half and was driving after a punt was mishandled and picked up by Landon Price, giving the Wildcats another shot. Four plays later, however, Hokes Bluff’s Austin Roberts grabbed a loose ball on the Eagles’ 10-yard line.

“I think that was the play of the game,” Robertson said. “If they had scored there, it would’ve been a tie and they would’ve had the momentum.”

Hokes Bluff continues region play next week with a trip to Crossville. 

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