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NORTH LITTLE ROCK FOOTBALL | Cats get big road victory

Photos by Jaison Sterling North Little Rock’s Fred Allen clears a hole at West Memphis last Friday night
Photos by Jaison Sterling North Little Rock’s Fred Allen clears a hole at West Memphis last Friday night
Photos by Jaison Sterling North Little Rock’s David O’Bannon, Daniel Barnes and Austin Blair check the call on the offensive line.
Photos by Jaison Sterling North Little Rock’s David O’Bannon, Daniel Barnes and Austin Blair check the call on the offensive line.

The loss to Cabot was bad, but according to coach Brad Bolding, it may have been one of the best things that could have happened to the North Little Rock Charging Wildcats.

“It made us get back to basics,” Bolding said. “It woke us up.”

The West Memphis Blue Devils can attest to the Charging Wildcats being reawakened. North Little Rock scored quickly and often in a 38-0 win at West Memphis.

“We came out and we played well,” Bolding said, “in every quarter but the third. We made some mistakes, put it on the ground a little bit.”

But all in all, the Charging Wildcats responded well behind the running of Deion Tidwell who rushed for 93 yards on 17 carries and three touchdowns

Bolding said after being a lead blocking fullback for stars such as Altee Tenpenny and Juan Day, it’s Tidwell’s time.

“It’s his third year as a starter, and you know he’s been opening the door for those other guys,” Bolding said. “I think he feels like it’s his turn.”

The win was a “bounce back” game after losing in heartbreaking fashion to Cabot. Bolding said his team bounced back instantly.

“We had a great week of practice,” Bolding said, “we know it’s about how well you prepare, and we felt like this week we did a better job as players and coaches of preparing.”

Standout receiver K.J. Hill caught four passes for 44 yards and a touchdown last week.

West Memphis who has been a powerhouse team historically has fallen upon some lean times, but Bolding said there’s no one on their schedule that can be classified as automatic.

“There are no cupcakes on our schedule,” Bolding said. “We play in a very tough conference with a lot of good coaches.”

Another “good team” comes to town this week. Jonesboro, who gave the Charging Wildcats all they wanted last season in a cold driving rain in Jonesboro last year, are this week’s opponent.

The Hurricane lose running back Martin Stafford but have a good group back this season.

They defeated Little Rock Central 42-24 last week and are 3-2 on the season as is the Charging Wildcats.

Bolding said getting healthy players would be key in a tough game. Peyton Holmes, who has three interceptions in six quarters this season. Two of them were returned for touchdowns, but one was called back for an illegal block in the back on the return.

Bolding also gets some key players back on his offensive line.

Kickoff is at 7 p.m.

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