Reeds Spring quarterback Nick Haddock called his own number 35 times on Friday night, but the only number he worries about is No. 8.
Reeds Spring stayed undefeated and improved to 8-0 by beating Central 35-24 Friday at Carl Langley Field at Wolves Stadium. Haddock rushed 35 times for 222 yards and three touchdowns from the Wolves’ triple option offense. Reeds Spring survived an 18-point Bulldogs scoring onslaught in the fourth quarter to hold on for the win.
“It was a great win. We knew it was going to be a tough game coming in.” Haddock said. “They are a great ball team and I don’t think their record represents how good they all, so we knew we were going to have to come to work all week.”
A quarterback rushing 35 times was just fine with Reeds Spring coach Lance Gosch.
“In our offense, you never know who’s going to stand up,” Gosch said. “(Haddock) does a great job running our offense and he does a lot of stuff at the line of scrimmage that gets us in the right place, and so he did a terrific job tonight.”
Haddock added a touchdown pass to Adam Taylor in the final minute of the second half after Central had a turnover on downs at its own 29-yard line.
The Reeds Spring defense held Central running back Garrett King’s rushing yardage in the single digits until King got loose for a 29-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to start the Bulldogs’ desperation onslaught.
“We got a little shaken up there for about a couple of seconds, and then we got it together,” Wolves defensive tackle Adam Hale said.
Hale said the Wolves didn’t do anything special on the defensive front in order to play so effectively for three quarters.
“The game plan is the same as it is every week: work together and work for each other. It ain’t one man doing it out there by himself; it’s all 11 of us working together,” Hale said.
Central coach Lorenzo Williams said his offensive line got outplayed, which made for a tough night for King.
“The only thing they were doing is playing hard. That was it. We weren’t blocking well up front and they were coming at us,” Williams said.
Williams claimed full responsibility for the loss.
“I called some terrible plays tonight. I probably cost us two touchdowns,” Williams said. “I got out-coached tonight, Coach (Lance) Gosch did a great job.”
After Central linebacker Scotty Davis recovered a fumble and dashed 58 yards for a touchdown early in the fourth quarter, Reeds Spring chewed up 6:30 with a 54-yard drive that ended with a turnover on downs at the Central 1-yard line.
“They came right at us. It wasn’t a secret,” Williams said. “They were doing a good job running the ball. They did a good job falling forward, which if you run an offense with this — if you can fall forward a lot, that’s good. You can turn a one-yard run into a four-yard run and that starts wearing on you after a while.”
Colton Pomery rushed 15 times for an even 100 yards and a touchdown.
Reeds Spring plays Friday at Bolivar (7-1) in a game that will decide the outright Central Ozark Conference Small Division champion. Central (4-4) hosts Mt. Vernon at Harrison Stadium Friday at 7 p.m.