Rockets Blast Past NLR in Home Opener

Photo by Grant Sellinger

The Catholic High Rockets took on the North Little Rock Charging Wildcats in their season opener at War Memorial Stadium on Friday. The Wildcats, now a non-conference opponent due to the Rockets dropping from 7A to 6A in football, placed fifth in the MaxPreps rankings on August 21st. The Rockets were in the 48th position.

Spurred on by a handful of NLR students trashing the campus the night before the game, the Rockets came blasting out of the gate, scoring a touchdown and extra point on their first drive down the field. After blocking a punt, the Rockets scored a field goal in the remainder of the first quarter. After adding another field goal late in the second quarter, the Rockets entered halftime up 13-0.

Supported by senior quarterback Sam Sanders, the Rockets were able to keep moving down the field and kicked another field goal midway through the third quarter.

The Charging Wildcats finally put a score on the board with a touchdown in the fourth quarter with three and a half minutes remaining. Due to a failed two-point conversion, the team remained at six points. After a punt from Catholic and a turnover on downs from North Little Rock, the ball was back in the hands of the home team, and the Rockets capitalized to fully pull away with a touchdown carry by Sam Sanders. The extra point kick was a success, and the final score was settled at 23-6, a big victory for the Catholic High Rockets.

North Little Rock completed the game with 253 yards on offense, compared with Catholic’s 189. However, North Little Rock had 102 penalty yards, as well as two turnovers, compared to zero penalties and turnovers for the Rockets. 

Mr. Richard Cochran, defensive coordinator for the Rockets, said that the game was an overall benefit for the team. “It is good to play an opponent like North Little Rock,” he said. “That team will see you make a mistake, and they will make you pay for it. They see the vulnerabilities of their opponents. We had to be smart and play well the entire game.”

The next opponent for the Rockets is the Greene County Tech High School Golden Eagles on September 9 in Paragould.

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