Beating a good team on the road is hard. Betting a good team and the officials on the road is practically impossible as Maumelle found out last Thursday night at Shreveport Byrd as the Hornets lost, 24-21.
The poorly officiated game overshadowed a very good performance by junior quarterback Weston Pierce who threw for 264 yards and two touchdowns on a 20 for 28 night. He also rushed for a touchdown.
Pierce’s favorite target was senior receiver Roderick Watts, who had eight catches for 129 yards and a touchdown in the loss. Hunter Specht was right behind with seven catches and the other receiving touchdown.
Maumelle falls to 1-3 on the season and travels to undefeated Little Rock Christian this Friday night in the start of 5A-Central Conference action.
Christan, last season’s 5A state runner-up, are led by coach Eric Cohu and he has the Warriors clicking as they’re averaging 45 points a game on offense.
Against Byrd, Maumelle dominated offensively as the Hornets rolled to 19 first downs, to Byrd’s 10 and 339 yards of total offense to 217. Byrd’s offense, a triple-option flexbone, is rush first, and the Yellow Jackets had 209 of those yards on the ground.
The game hinged on two plays, both blown calls by the Louisiana officials.
With 8:43 remaining in the third quarter, Byrd appeared to fumble the ball away at the goal line and Maumelle’s Jessie Knight came out of the pile holding the ball above his head. The officials ruled Byrd had recovered.
Byrd scored on the next play to go up, 21-7.
Maumelle rallied and cut the lead to 24-21, then got the ball back late in the fourth quarter. The drive stalled out and on fourth down with eight yards to go and 2:41 remaining in the game, Pierce found Watts in the right flat with a convoy of blockers in front of him. Watts dragged defenders past the 49 yard line and that would have been a first down.
The official closest to the ball had Watts clearly past the 49. The official on the far side of the field disagreed and spotted the ball short of the 48 and about a foot short of the first down.
Byrd got the ball back and ran out the clock to win the game.
» Click here for Maumelle’s cumulative football stats
Play of the Game: Two bad calls spoiled Maumelle’s chances at the win.A clear fumble recovery by Maumelle was ruled Byrd’s ball in the third quarter and a gutsy, late fourth quarter drive that could have set up a tying field goal, or a touchdown ended with a poor spot by the officials and turned the ball over on downs.
Player of the Game: Weston Pierce accounted for all the game’s scores as threw for two touchdowns and rushed for another. Pierce passed for 264 yards on a 20 for 28 night.
What’s next: Maumelle (1-3) travels to Little Rock Christian (4-0) at 7 p.m. this Friday
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Friday: Maumelle 21, Ozark 7 (Scrimmage)
Aug. 26: Maumelle 31, Sylvan Hills 21
Sept. 3: Robinson 47, Maumelle 44 (OT)
Sept. 10: Vilonia 34, Maumelle 32
Sept. 16: Maumelle at Shreveport Byrd 24 Maumelle 21
Friday, Sept. 24: Maumelle at Little Rock Christian
Friday, Oct. 1: Beebe at Maumelle
Friday, Oct. 8: Maumelle at Jacksonville
Friday, Oct. 15: Pulaski Academy at Maumelle
Friday, Oct. 22: Maumelle at White Hall
Friday, Oct. 29: Watson Chapel at Maumelle
All games kickoff at 7 p.m. unless noted, BOLD indicates 5A-Central conference game
5A-Central StandingsLittle Rock Christian ... 4-0White Hall ... 3-1Pulaski Academy ... 2-1Maumelle ... 1-3Watson Chapel ... 0-2Beebe ... 0-3Jacksonville ... 0-3
Dashaire Ford-Burton, Southern Arkansas
Nathan Juhl, Arkansas Monticello
Charles McRae, Arkansas State
Houston Motes, Arkansas Tech
Jonathan Reyes, Iowa Wesleyan
Zyon Slade, College of the Canyons, a junior college in California
Kendall Donnerson, was cut by Carolina Panthers on Aug. 24 and has yet to sign with a new team.
Have any additions to this list? Email us at Arkansas@substack.com
Watch Horton in ActionSports streamer Natural State Sports will have a Coach’s show with Kirk Horton, broadcasting live from American Pie Pizza at 7 p.m. this Tuesday night. The show will be weekly and should be every following Tuesday at 7 p.m. until the season is over.Natural State Sports will also be streaming Maumelle football games this season and the YouTube channel can be found by clicking here.
Sports streamer Natural State Sports will have a Coach’s show with Kirk Horton, broadcasting live from American Pie Pizza at 7 p.m. this Tuesday night. The show will be weekly and should be every following Tuesday at 7 p.m. until the season is over.
Natural State Sports will also be streaming Maumelle football games this season and the YouTube channel can be found by clicking here.