Two touchdowns in the last five minutes, one by the defense, gave Hot Springs a 21-10 win over De Queen Oct. 5.
The Leopards led most of the game after scoring on their first possession. Mack Carver returned the opening kickoff from the De Queen five to the Hot Springs 40. On third and one Quinshawn Bennett slipped a tackle at the line of scrimmage and gained 10 yards for a first at the HS 21.
On third and five Marquez Ester ran behind Bryan Carillo at right tackle for a 16 yard touchdown. Edgar Garcia kicked the extra point for a 7-0 lead with 9:15 to go in the opening quarter.
The Leopards threatened again before halftime. Kade Martin recovered a Trojan fumble at the De Queen 31 on the next to last play of the first period.
De Queen drove for a first down at the HS 27, but a first down sack lost six yards. Isaiah Williams completed a pass to Carver for five, then connected with Hayden Harp for 10 plus to bring up fourth and less than a yard.
A quarterback sneak was stopped short to give the Trojans the ball. The visitors got on the board before halftime when Billy Alvarez hit a 33 yard field goal with 2:52 left in the second period to cut the lead to 7-3.
The score was unchanged until late in the third quarter. The Trojan offense was largely improvisions by Santiair Thomas who completed few passes but frequently scrambled for long gainers. On a third and goal to go, Thomas kept around the left side for a TD that put Hot Springs up 9-7 with 3:04 left in the third. A low PAT kick was blocked by the middle of the De Queen defense.
With 10:43 to go in the game, the Leopards got the ball at their 39 after a punt.
On third and six Williamson threw to Carver at midfield, and the receiver picked up another dozen for a first down at the HS 38.
Ester gained two on first down. Harp caught a quick pass to make it third and one. After Ester was stopped for no gain, De Queen took a time out.
On fourth and one Honorio Dominguez hit a 45 yard field goal to put De Queen back in front 10-9 with 7:38 left.
Manuel Ramirez stopped the Trojan return at the HS 33. Thomas then improvised the drive for the winning touchdown.
He started by running for 16 yards on a broken play for a first down at the HS 49.
After another first down at the Leopard 37, Thomas scrambled for nine yards. On second and one, he fumbled the snap but picked it up and ran to the DHS 16 where Carver pushed him out of bounds.
On second and nine Thomas threw to Eddie Miles for a gain of eight. Thomas then kept for a first down at the DHS five then gained two to make it second and three.
Aaron Williams scored from the three to put the Trojans up 15-10 with 4:33 in the game.
Williams’ run for two was stopped short by Carver.
Harp returned the ensuing kickoff from the DHS 18 to the 35. Four incompletions gave the ball to the visitors, but they gave it back when a fourth down pass was caught out of bounds.
De Queen’s hopes of a last ditch comeback were snuffed out when Deonte Sanders made an interception at midfield and raced for a TD with 1:55 left.