The White Hall Bulldogs went on the road Friday night and outlasted the Maumelle Hornets in a rainy affair by a final of 23-16.
The game included a rain delay that took place at halftime and lasted for about an hour or more, according to White Hall Head Coach Mike Vaughn. The delay made for a late-night finish, and the final whistle wasn’t blown until around midnight.
The Bulldogs leaned on their running game with a combination of Donte Buckner and Kam Robinson. When it was time to make plays in the air, White Hall quarterback Josh Looney made the throws, and his wide-outs made some “big-time plays,” as Vaughn called them.
After both offenses struggled to get anything going in the weather conditions early on, the Bulldogs finally strung together a scoring drive. With about a minute to play in the first quarter, Robinson ran it in for a 2-yard rushing touchdown to make it 7-0 after C.J. Collins converted on the extra point.
Bad special teams play allowed the Bulldogs to gain possession on Maumelle’s 14 yard line early in the second quarter. As they were keying in on Buckner, Robinson took advantage and recorded a 14-yard rushing touchdown for his second of the game to put White Hall up by two possessions.
“He’s in our short yardage package,” Vaughn said of Robinson. “They basically were trying to stop Donte, and we gave it to Kam. Our lineman did a great job of blocking and opening things up.”
White Hall’s defense forced three punts in the first half and didn’t allow any points. Bulldog athlete Kolby Drake intercepted a pass on Maumelle’s 36 yard line with about four minutes left in the first half to keep the Hornets off the board before the delay.
“The defense played fantastic,” Vaughn said. “We made them punt numerous times. Our defense was so stubborn. Kolby Drake had a real good ball game.”
Coming out of the delay, the Hornets finally got on the board with two minutes to go in the third. Maumelle’s Evan Robinson burst for a 26-yard rushing touchdown, and he then punched it in for the 2-point conversion to make it 15-8.
But the Bulldogs answered back by converting on a 4th and long pass play. Looney hit Drake on that fourth down to keep their drive going, taking the wind out of the Hornets’ wings.
Buckner recorded a two-yard rushing touchdown to cap off the drive that started at the Maumelle 34, making the score 21-8.
“That throw and catch in that rain on 4th and 12, it was fabulous,” Vaughn said. “Our receivers, Baylor Owen, Treydon Marks and Drake, made great catches.”
With around six minutes to play, Maumelle’s Louis Hartje ran for an 88-yard touchdown to make it a one-possession game. White Hall would then get the ball and be forced to punt with about two minutes to play, but their defense held strong, earning the Bulldogs a 5A Central road win.
“Anytime you beat a team of that quality you have to play pretty well,” Vaughn said.
The Bulldogs move to 2-1 on the season and will travel to Little Rock Friday night to take on JA Fair.