MORRILTON -- The Watson Chapel Wildcats faced the Morrilton Devil Dogs on homecoming night in Devil Dog Stadium with Morrilton taking care of business, 38-20.
The game had an electric start, with a 47-yard touchdown pass from Morrilton's Damarius Martin to Kaleb McCuien, which was immediately followed by a quick drive by the Wildcats and a 2-point conversion, giving Watson Chapel an 8-7 lead early in the game.
Marquez Brentley started at quarterback for Watson Chapel but was replaced after a few possessions and later shared snaps with Akyell Madison, who threw an interception on just his second throw of the game.
The offense never seemed to get back into rhythm after that. Madison would bounce back, though, catching an interception himself later on in the quarter.
Morrilton (5-2, 2-2 in 5A conference play) clearly outmatched Watson Chapel (1-5, 0-4 in 5A conference) in size and physicality. That didn't stop the Wildcats from making momentum-swinging plays to stay in the game as long as they could, like the Brentley pass to Nakeel Lawrence in the middle of the second quarter. Lawrence would end up taking it 75 yards for a touchdown to cut the lead down to 21-14.
THE GAME CHANGED WHEN
Watson Chapel had to punt from their own 1 yard line down just 21-14, resulting in a botched kick that only made it to the 17 yard line. It took Morrilton just three plays after that punt to score, stretching their lead back to 14. The kick gave the momentum right back to Morrilton, but this time it seemed for good. Morrilton would drive for another touchdown before half making it a 21-point lead.
Watson Chapel never recovered from that. They started out the second half with an onside kick, which was unsuccessful, then six straight possessions for the Wildcats failed to produce points. Four of those result in a turnover on downs, but two drives died because of fumbles.
THE GAME BALL GOES TO
Kaleb McCuien, the Morrilton receiver who had a great performance for the Devil Dogs with three touchdowns and 87 total yards. Every time it seemed like the Wildcats were going to come up with a stop, McCuien made a huge play. Morrilton running back Destin Tate also had a good day, gaining 108 total yards and one touchdown.
Watson Chapel's next game will be on the road October 14th against Vilonia at 7 P.M.
Morrilton will face White Hall on the road October 7th at 7 P.M.