Caleb Reinhart returned the opening kickoff 75 yards for a touchdown, giving Manila a quick 6-0 lead over Paragould Thursday night in junior high football action, but the Rams shut down the Lion offense the rest of the way en route to a 32-6 non-conference victory.
(Town Crier photos/Trent Fletcher)
Paragould scored on its next possession, driving 69 yards in only five plays, capped off by a 45 yard end around touchdown run by Dre Page. Johnny Culp converted a two point run, giving the Rams a 16-6 lead with 3:07 left before halftime.
Meanwhile, the Ram defense held the Lion offense in check, limiting Manila to just 37 yards of total offense. Paragould's defense gave up just three yards of rushing to Manila while Lion quarterback Kyle Joyner completed one of eight through the air for 34 yards.
The Rams capped off their scoring night on a 48 yard touchdown burst by Culp with 4:23 left in the game. Culp added the two point conversion run to set the final score at 32-6.
Alldonn Skelton led Manila, rushing three times for 12 yards. Reinhart caught Manila's only pass of the night for 34 yards.
"We got a great kickoff return to start the game by Reinhart, but we just couldn't get anything going offensively after that," said Manila coach Jerry Castor. "I'm not trying to make excuses, but we really miss Zach Chamberlain, and we also had another lineman out, so we were playing two new linemen and we missed a lot of blocks. We also were without Thomas Davis, one of our top running backs. We are also learning a new defense and we didn't do a good job on their quarterback. We took some bad angles and Paragould made some big plays against us. We are going through a learning process, but we're going to get there. I was proud of the kids. They never gave up."
Manila (0-2) will try to pick up its first win of the season Thursday night when they travel to Harrisburg to take on the Hornets. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.