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Southside, Fitzgerald even 6A-Central record
Fort Smith Southside High School News

Avery Fitzgerald had 18 kills, 10 digs and three aces Tuesday to pace the Mavericks to a 25-22, 25-8, 25-19 sweep of Cabot in 6A-Central play. The Mavs (6-4, 1-1) return home Thursday to play North Little Rock. Also in Tuesday’s win, sophomore Toree Tiffee and Aleigha Johnson had 10 and six kills, respectively. Hannah Hogue had 31 assists for the Mavericks, and Kelsey Hamilton finished with 17 digs....

9/11/2019

Lady Bears move to 2-0 in conference with home win
Fort Smith Northside High School News

Northside served up a bunch of aces to grab the first two sets of Tuesday’s 6A-Central home match with Little Rock Central. After the Lady Tigers avoided the sweep by winning the third set, the Lady Bears used their power game to race out to an 8-1 lead in the fourth set in eventually taking the match. Northside moved to 2-0 in conference play after prevailing in four sets at Kaundart-Grizzly Fieldhouse, 25-22, 25-18, 24-26, 25-12. “I told my girls that each conference win is bigger than they know, just to keep finding ways to come home with wins night after night is a big deal in our conference,” Northside coach Matt Waack said. “There’s not any rollover matches (in the conference), it doesn’t look like.” The Lady Bears, in particular senior Taylor Pate, got out of the gate strong. Pate served five aces as Northside (5-4, 2-0) scored the first seven points of the match. Senior Lexie Mosby then added a kill to extend the lead to 8-0. “All I was thinking in my head was get (the serves) in, get it going, get the team hyped and just go to work,” Pate said on her early aces. “That’s all I could think about. “We’ve been working a lot on serving and serve-receive and our hitting, all of that has been a real big portion of our practices, especially our serving.” Central (4-3-1, 0-2) fought back within three on several occasions, including 19-16. But back-to-back kills from Lady Bear senior hitter Nicole Medlin helped swing momentum back to Northside, and after one final Lady Tiger surge, senior Quineisha Tillery’s kill capped the set. Then in the second set, senior Grace Anne Hollenbeck served four aces, including three straight at one juncture, as Northside ran out to a 9-2 lead. Up 15-12, Medlin’s kill began a 4-0 run, with another kill by Medlin capping it, and she added another kill to extend the lead to eight, 22-14. Central controlled things for much of the third set before Northside rallied. An ace from Hollenbeck put the Lady Bears one point away from the sweep with a 24-23 lead. But the Lady Tigers scored the next three points to force a fourth set. Northside, though, got another big start, taking an 8-1 lead as Medlin delivered several more kills. The Lady Bears closed things out with a flourish. An ace from Mosby began a match-ending 9-2 run. Back-to-back kills from Sydney Klein pushed the lead to 12 points, 24-12, and junior Thea Bishop’s kill on the very next point finished things out. “They came out in the fourth set storming like I asked them to and they made their dominance known,” Waack said. “And Central’s good this year; that’s the scrappiest I’ve ever seen them. ... They took North Little Rock to four as well, so they’re seeing some success.” Medlin finished the night with 17 kills and six blocks, Hollenbeck had 12 kills, and Lainey Logsdon added nine. Hollenbeck had six aces as well. Mosby recorded 38 assists and had three aces, Pate had 17 digs and five aces and Macie Grams finished with 14 assists. Northside will play its first conference road match Thursday, going to Little Rock to face Mount St. Mary....

9/11/2019

NHS girls turn in solid showing at FS Invitational meet
Fort Smith Northside High School News

Northside cross country coach Jeff Lewis had a few surprises waiting for him during Saturday’s Fort Smith Invitational meet at Ben Geren Park. For one thing, Lewis was surprised by the number of runners from various teams who were able to compete despite stifling heat. But perhaps his biggest surprise came when one of his Lady Bear runners, Felicity West, was carrying around a plaque, symbolizing the team’s runner-up finish in the girls division. The Lady Bears finished second in the 5A/6A girls division with 76 points, trailing only Siloam Springs, which won the team meet with 51 points. Northside also took second place by two points against Bentonville West. “I was pretty stoked about that; that’s a big accomplishment for those girls, with (West), Dirie (Balderas) and Darriana (Franklin), they’ve worked so hard,” Lewis said. “We’re trying to plug in number four and five there and looking for a couple of girls to step up and pick up the slack from the seniors that I graduated and I lost three pretty good ones there, so I was really pleased with that. “Saturday was much larger than we anticipated; we had almost over 900 entries. ... There were several thousand people on the venue and it was a learning experience for us, but I was real pleased; I thought we ran really well.” West finished fourth in the individual girls division, running a time of 22:35.30. Franklin finished 11th while Balderas came in 12th place. Also for the Lady Bears, Emma Cobb and Jennifer Hernandez were 24th and 25th, respectively. “I saw Felicity come in and she finished fourth, which was a good day for her and she ran really well,” Lewis said. “She was within 41 seconds of her (personal record), and for the first race of the year, it was pretty good.” Greenwood had the top two girls finishers in Taylor Koeth and Macie Cash. Koeth was first in a time of 20:45.10, while Cash was second, running in 20:59.40. Southside’s girls were led by Judith Ramirez, who came in 22nd (26:46.00), while Emmie Burgess was 33rd. In the boys division, Northside’s Braeden Hindley was second in the individual portion, running in a time of 18:16.60, while Southside’s Quinlan Broadway was fifth (18:31.70). Bentonville West’s Keegan Terrell was the first-place finisher (18:00.10). Bentonville West also won the 5A/6A boys team title, with Siloam Springs finishing second. Southside was fifth while Northside came in seventh. Also for the Mavericks, Isaac Teague finished 13th, while Xander Naegle came in 21st. Northside The Grizzlies scored 10 points in the second quarter to trail Greenwood at halftime of Friday’s game, 13-10. But two third-quarter fumbles proved to be the Grizzlies’ undoing, which led to two Bulldog touchdowns as Greenwood pulled away for a 38-10 win. “Greenwood does a great job and you can’t play them and make mistakes and give up big plays and we did both,” Northside coach Mike Falleur said. “You’ve got to credit them for the way they played and it’s like I told our guys, you need to look in the mirror at all of us, coaches and players, and kind of evaluate what we did and didn’t do that caused that game to go the other way the way it did.” The Grizzlies (1-1) finished with 181 total yards of offense. Quarterback Drey Norwood rushed for 65 yards and a touchdown while throwing for 31 yards. Sophomore tailback Seth Fields was the leading rusher with 68 yards. For the second straight week, senior linebacker J.J. Mills was the top tackler with 13 stops. Defensive back Montay Parks added 11 tackles. Senior linebacker Stetson Van Matre also had three of the team’s five sacks, with linebacker Conley Bone and lineman Kaleb McDonald registering the other sacks. This Friday, Northside will have its home opener at Mayo-Thompson Stadium, taking on Van Buren. Southside The Southside Mavericks spent the first two days this week hoping to correct some mistakes that cost them in last week’s 37-13 loss to Bentonville West. “I didn’t think we played real well, but we had a lot of new faces and a lot of guys that were inexperienced,” coach Jeff Williams said. “We came out this week and tried to get those things corrected. We have to try to get better each day as an individual and team.” The Mavericks travel to Greenwood on Friday to face the Bulldogs. “Watching them on film against Northside, I really thought they flew around to the ball defensively and made a lot of plays,” Williams said. “It’s always a great atmosphere at their place and this will help make us a stronger football team.” The Mavericks host Rogers Heritage in their 2019 non-conference finale, then hit the road for back-to-back 7A-Central games at Conway and Cabot. Offensive struggles Southside quarterback Parker Wehunt threw for 90 yards and two touchdowns in last week’s loss to Bentonville West. Wehunt completed 7-of-19, including second half touchdown passes to Jake Tyler and Josh Hannan. Tyler caught three passes for 37 yards, including a 26-yard touchdown reception on the next to final play of the game. Hannan caught a 31-yard touchdown pass in the loss as well. “You can see they’re continuing to get better in that area,” Williams said. “We also did some things where, if you had more experience, that wouldn’t have happened. It’s all about experience.” Fullback Nathan Bogner caught two passes for 19 yards. Southside junior running back Johntarrius Washington added 47 yards rushing on 18 carries. Tennis The Southside boys tennis team has started conference play undefeated prior to Tuesday’s matches, defeating Conway and Cabot, the latter 5-0. Coach Braden Eads credits the play of his top two singles players, Robison Wright and Graysen Conley, as the reason for his team’s undefeated start in conference. He added his top boys doubles team of Reiter Ahlert and Daniel Kiss have been delivering as well. “We are strong on boys number one doubles and boys number one singles as far as I expect them to do well in conference,” Eads said. “On the girls side, we are strong on both one and two doubles.” The top Southside girls doubles team consists of Jordan Cormier and Annie Nelligan, while the number two girls doubles team consists of Ashlyn Roffine and Kate Coleman. As for Northside tennis, the Lady Bears won their first two conference matches against Bryant and Little Rock Central while the Grizzlies split their first two, beating Bryant but falling to Little Rock Central. Once again, Northside’s top girls singles player, junior Kate Files, is turning in another impressive season. Files is 7-1 so far, with her only defeat coming to a familiar nemesis, Fayetteville’s Mary Houston, which beat Files each of the past two seasons en route to winning consecutive state titles. Houston beat Files in their latest match, 6-4, 6-4....

9/11/2019

Lady Bears win conference opener
Fort Smith Northside High School News

The Northside Lady Bears won their 6A-Central volleyball opener Thursday, rallying from an opening-set loss to defeat Bryant in four. Northside prevailed, 18-25, 25-16, 25-23, 25-21, in the match played at Kaundart-Grizzly Fieldhouse. Nicole Medlin finished with eight kills for the Lady Bears, while Grace Anne Hollenbeck added seven and Quineisha Tillery and Lainey Logsdon each had five kills. Also for Northside (2-2, 1-0), Taylor Pate recorded 18 digs, with Hannah Smith adding 12. Lexie Mosby finished with 20 assists and Macie Grams had 14. Mosby, Pate and Smith each served three aces. The Lady Bears, who participated in the Spikefest tournament Saturday in Little Rock, resume 6A-Central play on Tuesday with a home match against Little Rock Central....

9/8/2019

Wolverines strike early, often against Mavs
Fort Smith Southside High School News

Bentonville West needed just four plays to break the ice Friday at Jim Rowland Stadium. The Wolverines’ Dalton McDonald threw two first-half touchdown passes as the visitors humbled the Mavericks, 37-13, in Southside’s 2019 debut. West, which dropped its opener to Owasso, Oklahoma, last week, drove 74 yards in just four plays on its opening position. McDonald’s 37-yard strike to a diving Brandon Humes led to Carlos Hall’s 20-yard scamper. Less than a minute into the game, the Mavericks were behind the sticks. Then, on second-and-three from the 12, quarter Parker Wehunt saw the ball snapped over his head. To avert disaster, he batted the loose ball out of the end zone for a safety. The Wolverines, who were intercepted on their second offensive series, a nice pick by the Mavericks’ Dakota Wareham, added a late first quarter touchdown on McDonald’s 35-yard TD throw to Jonas Higson. Wareham also made a nice tackle on special teams. The Wolverines went for two, and McDonald’s 2-point conversion toss to Stephen Dyson extended the lead to 17-0. The Wolverines put the game away with two second quarter touchdowns. Humes’ 37-yard reception set up Nick Whitlatch’s 1-yard plunge for a 24-0 lead, and the crushing blow was McDonald’s 34-yard strike to Nolan Schmitt with 2:41 to play in the half. Southside fumbled the first play of the third quarter, and the Wolverines cashed in with McDonald scrambling for a 5-yard TD run with 8:45 to play in the third quarter. The Mavericks found some offensive success in the final half. Wehunt, who was hampered in the first half by misses and dropped passes, scrambled 13 yards for a first down. Later in the drive, he found Josh Hannan with a 32-yard touchdown pass. Wehunt’s first career TD pass helped the Mavericks avert a potential shutout. Despite a running clock via the sportsmanship rule, the Mavericks weren’t done scoring. With just seconds left, Wehunt threw a 31-yard strike to Jake Tyler in the right corner of the end zone to account for the game’s final score. After completing just three passes in the first half, Wehunt threw for 82 yards in the final half, finishing his first career start with 99 yards passing. Fullback Nathan Bogner caught two passes for 19 yards. Southside travels to Greenwood next week....

9/7/2019

Bulldogs turn tables on Grizzlies en route to 38-10 win
Fort Smith Northside High School News

A strong second quarter had Northside primed to do big things in the second half against Greenwood. However, a pair of third-quarter fumbles, one of which was recovered in the end zone for a touchdown, swung momentum right back to the Bulldogs. The Bulldogs used that to score 18 straight points in the third in building a 31-10 lead. Greenwood went on to post a 38-10 win at Smith-Robinson Stadium, avenging last season’s only loss the Bulldogs had at the hands of the Grizzlies. Greenwood (1-0) jumped out to a 13-0 first-quarter lead before Northside (1-1) settled in and scored 10 second-quarter points to close within three, 13-10. But early in the second half, after the Grizzlies barely escaped a possible safety on a muffed punt return, they weren’t quite as lucky one play later. A snap was fumbled in the end zone, and Greenwood senior defensive back Logan Workman made the recovery for the touchdown. Jackson Stewart tacked on the PAT for a 20-10 lead. After forcing Northside to punt on the next series, the Bulldogs put together a drive which took almost five minutes before stalling. Stewart came on to kick a 41-yard field goal, extending the Bulldogs’ advantage to 13, 23-10. On the very next play from scrimmage, Northside fumbled it right back to the Bulldogs. Greenwood capitalized on the turnover, as quarterback Jace Presley tossed a screen pass to Aaron Ligon for a 14-yard TD with 19 seconds still showing in the third. Presley then hooked up with Jase Strozier for a two-point conversion, making it 31-10. Presley, a senior making his first start for the Bulldogs, then threw his fourth TD pass of the night, a 24-yard strike on fourth down to junior receiver Peyton Carter with 7:31 left. For the game, Presley completed 21-of-33 passes for 288 yards, with Carter catching nine of those passes for 117 yards. Junior tailback Hunter Wilkinson added 95 yards on 18 carries and caught four passes for 55 yards. Greenwood’s defense also held the Grizzlies to 181 yards of total offense, 25 of those coming in the second half. The Bulldogs started off strong, scoring on their opening series, covering 59 yards on seven plays, all through the air. On a third-and-9 from the Northside 28, Presley found Wilkinson, who made a leaping grab at the 10 and raced untouched into the end zone. Stewart tacked on the PAT for a 7-0 Greenwood lead three minutes into the game. Then another successful third-down conversion later in the opening quarter set up Greenwood’s second touchdown. On a third-and-8 from Greenwood’s 45, Presley threw a short pass to receiver Caden Brown. But Brown broke a tackle and sprung loose down the left sideline, going in from 55 yards out. The PAT was missed, keeping the Bulldogs’ lead at 13-0. Northside got its first big break on the ensuing kickoff, as Tyheen Prosise returned it 50 yards to the Bulldog 49. The Grizzlies eventually advanced inside the 5 as action shifted into the second quarter. But the drive stalled, and Northside was flagged for intentional grounding on a third-down incomplete pass. That backed the Grizzlies to the 25; however, Dagon Moore came on and was still able to drill a 42-yard field goal, putting Northside on the board. Later in the second quarter, the Grizzlies moved 86 yards in seven plays, thanks in large part to runs from quarterback Drey Norwood and tailback Seth Fields. Norwood finished off the drive with a 7-yard TD keeper with more than six minutes left in the half. Moore’s PAT cut the Bulldog lead to three, 13-10....

9/7/2019

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