The Van Buren Pointers got the junior high win they wanted since the start of the season.
Utilizing a short field for all of the first half, Van Buren scored on three of its first four possessions and ran away with a 48-16 win on Thursday night at Citizens Bank Stadium at Blakemore Field.
The win halted a two-game skid which began the season and granted the Pointers some much-needed momentum as they head into their bye week before the start of River Valley Conference play on Sept. 26 against Darby at Mayo-Thompson Stadium.
“It felt like in the first two games we were almost ready. We stressed to the kids how important it was to come out and get the ball rolling,” said Van Buren coach Eric Capp. “It certainly feels better with a win than a loss going into the bye week.”
Last week, Van Buren had over 300 yards but four turnovers in the 32-12 loss to Heritage.
The Pointers began with a fumble on their third play of the game. After forcing Greenbrier to go three-and-out, Van Buren put together a seven-play touchdown drive and never looked back.
Malachi Henry ran in the first touchdown from two yards out and hauled in three passes for 41 yards and two touchdowns. Henry also had three two-point conversions as Van Buren went 6 of 6 on two-point conversions.
Truman Cooley added 157 yards on 12 carries with one TD.
Quarterback Presley Nichols had 12 carries for 109 yards with a touchdown and completed 6 of 10 passes for 61 yards and three more scores.
The Pointers began each of their drives inside Greenbrier territory with the average start at the Panther 41.
“We’ve been stopping ourselves the last two games and it was another thing we talked about all week,” Capp said. “Defensively, there were a few missed tackles, but things we can work on the next two weeks. What we did well the past two weeks, we did better (Thursday) night.”
Greenbrier got on the board late in the first half with a 65-yard run from Carter McElhany, who also had a 60-yard touchdown run in the second half. Aside from McElhany’s two big touchdown runs, Van Buren limited Greenbrier to just two yards on offense and one first down. The Pointers had 12 first downs and was 5 of 6 on third-down conversions.
Hayden Morton had 12 carries for 234 yards and four touchdowns as the Pirates defeated Bigelow 36-6 at Glen Wisely Field on Thursday.
The Pirates begin league play next week hosting Booneville.
Morrilton defeated the Airedales 20-8 at Citizens Bank Field.Alma travels to Green-brier for the final nonconference game
The Dragons dropped a 30-12 decision to Greenland at home.