NORTH LITTLE ROCK FOOTBALL | Cats roll past Searcy

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North Little Rock quarterback Heath Land looks downfield against Searcy. Photos by Jaison Sterling

All North Little Rock football coach Brad Bolding preaches is “get better this week than you were last week”.

Ever since a gut-punch loss to the Cabot Panthers nearly a month ago, that mantra seems to not only have returned with the rhetoric of the coaches, but the players have reintegrated the philosophy as well.

The Charging Wildcats are racking up points on offense and zeros on defense. Searcy was the latest victim for North Little Rock in a 52-0 drubbing on Friday.

Bolding’s analysis of the win, however, was Holtz-like.

“We put the ball on the ground a little bit too much,” Bolding said. “Our second team guys were a little sloppy, but all in all we played a good game.”

K.J. Hill atoned for an early fumble with an onside with a 22-yard punt return and an onside kick. He managed to catch touchdown pass or two as well.

With as many as seven season ending knee injuries on his team, Bolding has had to test his depth. So far the depth has come through.

Deion Tidwell, who has been the blue-collar guy the last three years, is reaping carries, yards and touchdowns.

“He has developed a lot of toughness,” Bolding said. “He may not run by a lot of people, but he will run through them.”

Tidwell took over the tailback position after Juan Day’s season ended with a knee injury against Pine Bluff.

But where the Charging Wildcats are excelling in the last three games, is on defense. North Little Rock has outscored their opponents 124-6 in the last three weeks shutting out West Memphis as well as Searcy, holding the Lions to less than 100 yards of total offense on Friday.

Marion is up next on the schedule, and while Bolding is pleased with the team’s resurgence, he is yet cautious.

“They’ve got some athletes on that team,” Bolding said. “We don’t take anyone on our schedule lightly.”

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