Cedarville took an early lead and controlled the tempo of the game.
However, Mountainburg was able to find a way to disrupt the Pirates and the Dragons won their home opener 40-28 Friday night at Dragon Field.
The Pirates took the opening drive and ate up about 7:20 of the clock to go up 8-0. During the drive, Cedarville had five first downs and made 3-of-4 third-down conversions. The squad even made a fourth-down conversion. Tate Larue, who finished with 13 carries for 62 yards, mad the first scored and Easton Mongold added the two-point conversion.
For the rest of the game, Cedarville was just 2 of 10 on third-down conversions and 3 of 6 on fourth downs. The Pirates finished with 19 first downs.
The Dragons struck quickly and often.
Mountainburg needed five plays to score three touchdowns. Senior Austin Taylor, who had the game 10 carries for 142 yards, scored from 60 yards out on the Dragons first possession of 2018. James Vanourny was 4 of 5 on PATs. The Dragons trailed 8-7 with 4:21 remaining in the first quarter.
After halting the Pirates and taking advantage of a bad snap, the Dragons set up camp in the Pirate 14. Two plays later, sophomore quarterback Ethan Gregory reached the end zone from six yards out, and Mountainburg led 14-8.
Cedarville would tie up the game on a four-yard run by Kelin Mitchell, who had 18 totes for 68 yards and two touchdowns.
Gregory took the first snap of the third possession, scrambled 60 yards for another score and Mountainburg would lead the duration of the game.
After netting over 400 yards in the opening week, Cedarville finished with 383 yards. Mitchell would also haul in four passes for 103 yards, including one for a 56-yard TD pass from Dylan Murray. Isaiah Lawson led the ground game with 76 yards on six carries.
Mountainburg finished with 417 yards with just 37 yards through the air. Malachi West had two touchdowns with 11 carries for 140 yards.