STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi State’s talented, veteran secondary is prepared for a rare sight in the Southeastern Conference — a true pass-happy offense.
The Bulldogs (5-5, 1-5 SEC) visit sixth-ranked Arkansas (9-1, 5-1) on Saturday with the Razorbacks averaging a league-leading 311.3 passing yards per game — more than 60 yards better than Tennessee, which is second.
Mississippi State’s Corey Broomfield said stopping the Razorbacks will certainly be a challenge, but it’s also a welcome change from the power running games so common in the SEC this season.
JONESBORO (AP) — Anthony Downing came off the bench to score 15 points and lead Missouri State to a 77-46 victory over Arkansas State on Tuesday night.
Downing made six of eight shots, including three 3-pointers, for the Bears (2-0).
Caleb Patterson scored 14 points, Michael Bizoukas 11 and Kyle Weems 10 for Missouri State, which enjoyed a 31-6 margin in bench scoring and a 41-36 rebounding advantage.
Malcoln Kirkland had 14 points and a game-high nine rebounds for the Red Wolves (0-2), who dropped their home opener. Trey Finn added 13 points.
FAYETTEVILLE (AP) — Running back Knile Davis is practicing with No. 6 Arkansas again, offensive coordinator Garrick McGee said Tuesday.
Davis, a junior, suffered what was described as a season-ending ankle injury in the preseason. It was unclear whether he would return to a game this season.
“I don’t get to make those decisions, so I try to stay out of stuff I don’t have anything to do with,” McGee said.
HEBER SPRINGS — The Heber Springs senior high basketball teams swept Batesville in season-opening games for the visitors here Tuesday night.
The Panthers won 51-49 as Austin Brown scored 25 and John Price fired in 23. The Lady Panthers won 36-24 as Magen LaRose hit for 16 points.
The Pioneers fought back from a 15-7 deficit after one quarter of play. The Panthers led 24-21 at halftime and the score was tied at 39 going into the fourth quarter. The Pioneers led briefly early in the fourth quarter.
SOUTHSIDE — The Southside Southerners and Lady Southerners opened their basketball seasons with home victories over Melbourne squads.
Led by Levi Henderson’s 12 points, including a go-ahead 3-point shot in overtime, the Southerners downed the Bearkatz 47-43. It was 37-all at the end of regulation.
Stephen Norris added 11 points for the winners. Logan Brown and Henderson provided five rebounds apiece, and Colby Sutton contributed four steals for the winners.
Circle Dec. 6 on your calendar.
That’s when the Lyon and Williams Baptist College teams will play the second and final round in their annual series for this basketball season. Lyon took round one Tuesday night in Becknell Gymnasium with the Scot women winning 73-67 and the Scot men also taking a hard-earned 6-pointer, winning 86-80.
The visiting Lady Eagles led most of the game and the Scots had to outscore them 11-3 over the last three minutes to get the win.
SOUTHSIDE — Cedar Ridge and Riverview took home the First Community Bank Junior High Invitational Tournament basketball titles here Saturday.
The Junior Timberwolves downed the Riverview Junior Raiders 36-33 as Cade Crabtree scored 18 points and Austin Reaves added 15. The Junior T-wolves improved their record to 5-0.
The Junior Lady Raiders downed the Cave City Junior Cavewomen 43-32 for the other crown as Erykah Johns totaled 20 points.
Shyanne Price poured in 24 points for 2-1 Cave City.
Williams Baptist Lady Eagles (2-1) vs. Lyon College Scots (2-1), Becknell Gymnasium, 6 p.m.
The Lady Eagles will bring a veteran and offensive-minded team to Becknell, said Lyon College Coach Tracy Stewart-Lange. “They’re pretty mature with a lot of seniors and shooters. We will have to extend our defense and find them in transition.” Some of those senior leaders are Becky Caldwell, Kayla Tyus and Jessica Shepard.
BEEBE — The Batesville Junior Pioneer and Junior Lady Pioneer basketball teams went opposite directions in season-opening games at a tournament in Beebe.
The Junior Pioneers moved into the winners’ bracket portion of the annual event by defeating the Beebe Junior Bobcats 43-29. The Junior Lady Pioneers fell 27-17 to the Junior Lady Badgers and went into the losers’ bracket.
The Junior Pioneers broke open a close game in the third quarter. They led 10-6 and 12-10 at the first two breaks. They led 34-22 after three quaerters.
The Lyon College Scots played enough good defense in the first half to record a 69-48, nonconference basketball victory over the Christian Brothers Lady Buccaneers in Becknell Gymnasium on Saturday.
After that, well, there’s plenty of work to be done, Lyon Coach Tracy Stewart-Lange said.
Now, for a new high school football opponent.
The Batesville Pioneers took care of the West Helena Cougars, knocking out their recent nemesis by a 40-6 count Friday night in the first round of the Class 5A State Playoffs in Pioneer Stadium.
Next up are the Greenbrier Panthers, 38-16 first-round winners over the Arkadelphia Badgers.