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Monday, July 22, 2024

WCFL Completes Week1 But Aren’t Done

Arkansas River Valley Business Directory

For months, football as a whole was questionable for 2020. Little League football was an even bigger question. With the COVID pandemic going on, even if Little League sports were allowed to play, how would smaller schools with already low numbers survive? The West Central Football League faced all of these issues and moreover the board tried to dot every “I” and cross every “T” to create a safe environment for their programs while still allowing kids to play and enjoy the sport of football. The league lost a program as Greenland respectfully bowed out of the 2020 season earlier in the summer. But with a lot of hard work and dedication from the coaches, the West Central Football League kicked off on Saturday, September 12th.

Magazine vs Hackett (courtesy of LaWaynea Cox)

Hackett traveled to Magazine for a defensive blockbuster with the Hornets walking away with an extremely close 2-0 victory. With both programs having a history of lighting up WCFL scoreboards, neither could seem to pull away from each other’s steel wall defenses. In fact, it was the Hornets defense that created the only score in the game when #69 Collin Cooper secured a solid tackle for a safety. Due to low numbers, Magazine canceled their 3rd and 4th Grade game against Hackett. Fans from both communities flowed in for this great game and were not left unsatisfied. Even better, everyone followed COVID precautions wonderfully. Hackett WCFL Representative, Kevin Stiles said “I think the fans on both sides Friday did a great job with the COVID guidelines. Magazine created a great atmosphere for the kids to play in. Both teams’ fans made it feel like we were playing a normal pre-COVID football game so this was a win for everyone no matter what the score was”.

JC Westside vs Mountainburg (courtesy of Tanya Kasper Robinson)

JC Westside took a road trip to Mountainburg’s Dragons Den. Both teams left the fans on the edges of their seats as the Rebels edged out the Dragons by a mere extra point attempt to win 8-6. Although the game was a bulldozer vs tank defensive game, both the Rebels and Dragons found the end zones for their first scores of the season. Fisher Bowden scored the lone touchdown for Mountainburg but the Dragons could not fire their way in for the two-point conversion. The Rebels Rylan Mendez found a weak spot in the Dragons scales to plow in for JC Westside’s score. It was Mendez who drove his way in to tack on the two-point conversion for the Rebel win. The 3rd and 4th Grade game was redemption for the Dragons, however, as they cruised to a 20-0 win over JC Westside. Mountainburg’s offense set the Rebels boots ablaze scorching JC Westside’s defense for three touchdowns. RJ Young flew through the Rebels defense scoring twice. To make those scores twice as nice, each touchdown run of Youngs was for 30 yards. Brody Guenther clawed his way past JC Westside’s defense on a big run also screaming downfield to cross the goal line for another Dragons touchdown. The Dragons secured a two-point conversion on one of those scores when “Powerful” Jeremiah Powell clawed his way across the goal line.

Mansfield vs West Fork (courtesy of Joanna James)

The Mansfield program headed north to face off with West Fork in a clash of the Tigers matchup. West Fork clawed at Mansfield with all they had, but the cards were not in their favor as they dropped both games to Mansfield. West Fork 5th and 6th Grade head coach, Rob Preston stated.“Aiden Stanton was the player who delivered our lone touchdown and Robbie Preston scored our two-point conversion. The key player’s trophy went to our QB, Carson Jones, and the offensive line!” Mansfield’s speed was the kryptonite for West Fork as big-play ensued throughout both games. Mansfield ended up winning their 3rd and 4th Grade game 38-6. The stand out players of that game were Colton Nelson, Layton Pyles, Sammy Cooper, and Payton James. The 5th and 6th Grade ended up with a 34-8 victory. Holding the football torch for that game was Hunter Whittaker, Cordel Stone, Keyton Oliver, and Caden Whittaker.

Magazine vs Hackett (courtesy of LaWaynea Cox)

The WCFL programs put on quite a show for their fans. With everything still uncertain in the world today, one thing that seemingly makes everything better is kids having fun. Win or lose, when these young men and women hit the field, they bring joy not only to themselves and each other but also to everyone in the stadiums and communities. Pandemic or not, the programs that played Saturday brought some normalcy into everyone’s Saturdays again.

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