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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Big-play combo found

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

QUICK STRIKE: Jason Huff scored three touchdowns late in the fourth quarter of Salem's home-opening loss to Yellville-Summit Sept. 12. Photo/Mullins
Jason Huff and Rocky Smith should have no problems with time management issues as they progress from high school into the "real world" after graduation.

Especially if they're just half as productive in the "real world" as they were in an eight-minute stretch against the Yellville-Summit Panthers Sept. 13 in the Salem Greyhounds' 2008 home opener.

Huff scored three TDs late in the fourth quarter -- one by ground, a 26-yard run -- the other two through the air on receptions of a pair of passes from Smith, one 69 and the other 64 yards.

But while this offensive outburst from the Greyhounds was well-timed, it was the Panthers that walked away with a 47-24 victory in the track-meet-turned-football-game.

Yellville-Summit quarterback Tim Hoyt turned in another big performance, rushing for 137 yards and four TDs, while passing for 118 yards and two more scores in the game.

The Class 3A Panthers (2-0), members of Salem's conference the past couple of years until re-classification forced them apart this season, started the game off by moving across midfield in two plays to open things.

But T.W. Langevin ended the Panthers' march with a sack of Hoyt that forced Yellville-Summit to punt.

Salem (0-2) didn't do much on its first possession, going three-and-out.

When the Panthers got the ball back, Hoyt picked up his first touchdown of the evening on a 25-yard run up the middle of the field with 4:23 left in the first quarter. The PAT was no good, but Yellville-Summit led 6-0.

Skylar Jones, starting at fullback this week for the Hounds, ripped off a big 25-yard run on Salem's next possession, but the Panthers maintained a 6-0 advantage after one.

Yellville-Summit added to this margin early in the second quarter on a 5-yard TD blast from Hoyt on third-and-goal at the 8:50 mark, boosting the Panthers' lead to 12-0.

Salem's first touchdown of the 2008 season, after the Hounds fell 6-0 to Westside in week one, came just minutes later.

Faced with a fourth down, Rocky Smith, starting at quarterback for the Hounds, hit Colin Young with a nice pass to give Salem a first down. Kyle Berry cashed this chance in for points with a 3-yard TD run on second-and-goal a couple of snaps later. The point-after was no good, but with 3:20 left until the half, the Greyhounds had edged within six, down 12-6.

But with 26 ticks showing on the first-half clock, Tim Hoyt hit Anthony Hoyt with a 9-yard TD toss to switch momentum back on Yellville-Summit's side of the field. Tim Hoyt ran the 2-point conversion in to send the squads to intermission with the Panthers on top 20-6.

Salem opened the third quarter by putting together a nice drive that pushed the ball all the way to the Yellville-Summit 19-yard line. The drive stalled out there and the Panthers took over on downs.

But as a sign of things to come, Huff picked off a Hoyt pass attempt deep in Panthers' turf.

Dylan Smith came up big for the Greyhound defense on the Panthers' next series, with a sack of Hoyt that ended up closing out a Yellville-Summit drive.

But the Panthers, too, came up big on defense, as Hoyt picked off a Smith pass attempt just before the end of the third quarter.

This set up Yellville-Summit's next touchdown, a 37-yard scamper by Hoyt that came with 35 seconds left in the frame, giving the Panthers a 26-6 cushion after three.

Then came a wild-and-wooly fourth quarter, when it seemed no lead might be safe.

Hoyt added another TD run to his resume to open the fourth, extending the Panthers' lead to 33-6 just a minute into the final quarter.

With the ball deep on their own end of the field, the Greyhounds went to work.

Huff peeled off a nifty 38-yard run that took the ball to the Panther 38-yard line, and three plays later, he hit paydirt on a 26-yard run around the left side of the big Greyhound line. The 2-point conversion was stopped, and with a shade over seven minutes left to play, Salem trailed 33-12.

Salem's defense got the ball back for its offensive troops by holding Yellville-Summit on downs.

Then, quick as lightning, the Hounds struck again.

Smith unleashed a pass for Young that was tipped, sending the ball straight into Huff's eager hands. Grabbing the ball, Huff sprinted for a 69-yard touchdown with 4:31 left in the game. The 2-point try was no good, leaving the Hounds in a 33-18 hole.

Hoyt wasn't done with his mission and on Yellville-Summit's next series, he hit Brandon White for a 24-yard touchdown pass with 2:42 left, pushing the Panthers in front 39-18.

Turns out Huff and Smith weren't done with their missions, either.

Two plays later, Smith uncorked a 64-yard fly-pattern pass to Huff for another TD near the two-minute mark of the game.

As it turns out, Salem's big-play offensive attack came just a touch too late for the Hounds to taste victory.

The Panthers added one final touchdown in the game on a 2-yard run from Anthony Hoyt that set the final score at 47-24, Yellville-Summit.

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