Blue Devils blasted by Wynne
Yellow Jackets too much for West Memphis in 36-16 loss
By BILLY WOODS
WM School District
The Blue Devils have a lot of work to do.
So said their coach, Robert Hooks, moments after Wynne handed West Memphis a 39-6 loss Friday night at Hamilton- Shultz Field.
West Memphis showed heart, conditioning and no quit in its 36-16 season-opening victory over Southwest Little Rock, but Wynne exposed the weaknesses in Week Two.
The Blue Devil offense was held to just one first down all night and it ran just 11 plays in the first half.
“We played a really, really good football team and a physical football team in Wynne,” said Hooks. “It showed us that we have a lot of work to do as far as physicality and playing that type of ball.”
Wynne (2-0) ran out to a 24-0 halftime lead and dominated the time of possession. The Yellow Jackets ran 41 snaps on offense to the Blue Devils’ 11. The hosts also had just 18 yards of offense in the first two quarters while Wynne had 284.
The Blue Devils had just one brief moment of glory in the first half. After Wynne took the opening kickoff 65 yards in seven plays for a 7-0 lead, it appeared the Blue Devil offense answered back quickly.
Junior quarterback Bryson Jenkins connected with senior H-back Eli Duncan for an apparent 58-yard touchdown pass, but the celebration was short-lived. West Memphis was flagged for an ineligible receiver downfield.
“That’s a momentum-changer,” said Hooks. “I thought it was a legal play. (The receiver) was off the ball. It’s just about communication. He told the ref that he was off the ball. But we’ve just gotta be able to capitalize and do better.”
West Memphis’ defense was challenged by the power approach of Wynne’s option offense, engineered by senior quarterback Marterius Ross, who accounted for four touchdowns on the night, three of which came through the air.
The visitors scored on their first four possessions behind the inside running of senior fullback Kamryn Speed, who rushed for 88 of his gamehigh 126 yards in the first half.
The Blue Devils finally got some offense going late in the fourth quarter after senior Dennis Dallas returned a kickoff 70 yards to the Wynne 13. On the ensuing snap, junior Tamerius Bell, who rushed for 93 yards and two touchdowns in the win over Southwest Little Rock, sped 13 yards for a touchdown with 3:05 left in the game.
For the game, Wynne outrushed the Blue Devils 351 to 29.
Hooks and his troops will have two weeks to correct the mistakes because next week is an open date for the Blue Devils. On Sept. 18 West Memphis travels to North Little Rock to take on one of the state’s top five teams.