HOPE – The Hope Bobcats found their mojo Friday to enter 5A South conference play with a 46-14 win over the DeQueen Leopards at Hammons Stadium on Homecoming night.
Amassing 526 yards of total offense, with 145 yards in the air and one touchdown from sophomore Quarterback Tyler Patterson, and 381 yards on the ground spread between senior Quarterback/Running Back Amorrion Dempsey, and sophomores Tamorrion Lindsey and K.D. Gulley, the Cats were sparked by the return to action of starters who were sidelined by a COVID-19 quarantine scare last week.
Patterson completed 9/12 with one interception passing on the night and the Bobcats’ ground game was positive on 35 plays.
Hope dominated the first half, holding DeQueen to only 7 points while rolling up 39 on the Cats’ side of the scoreboard. The Cats outscored the Leopards in the second half 13-7, producing points in all four quarters.
Lindsey got the Cats on the board from seven yards out on the run in the first quarter. Gulley struck next for the Bobcats with Hope at second and goal from the Leopard one-yard line with a charge straight ahead for the score.
Dempsey scored three times in the game, including a 95-yard scramble from the Hope six-yard line that saw him drop back to pass, then finding a hole, Dempsey cut against the grain in the middle of the field and turned on the afterburners for the touchdown.
The Cats struck paydirt, again, in the first stanza as Dempsey faked the hand-off at the DeQueen 42-yard line, found a hole in the middle left of the line and dashed down the sideline for the score.
Dempsey ran eight times in the game for 175 yards and three TDs on the night, while Lindsey rushed 15 times for 108 yards and two touchdowns, and Gulley rambled 87 yards on five carries with two touchdowns.
Lindsey drove in from the DeQueen one-yard line mid-way through the second quarter to put Hope at 20-7.
With the Cats up by 13 in the second quarter, Dempsey took the handoff from the DeQueen 38-yard line and scored. Later, Hope was at 1/10 on the DeQueen 32-yard line where Patterson lofted a bomb into the back of the end zone that Dempsey snared for the TD.
Gulley scored for Hope in the third quarter on a 42-yard dash down the sideline after taking the hand-off up the middle and bulling his way through the line.
After Dempsey’s 95-yard ramble in the fourth quarter, Lindsey capped the game with a two-yard score.
Defensively, the Cats had at least two sacks against DeQueen on the night, starting with senior Richard Ware’s first quarter blitz and a tandem sack by Gulley and sophomore Jalen Staggers that put the Leopards deep in their own territory to force a fourth down punt.
Bobcat Head Coach Phillip Turner said the win at Homecoming was a proud moment for the Cats.
“I was so proud of the effort and intensity our guys came out with on Friday,” Turner said. “I was extremely proud of the cheerleaders, the band, and especially the fans for cheering and giving our young men the atmosphere and support they needed.”
Turner asked Bobcat Nation to go on the road with the Cats on Oct. 1.
“We have to travel to Hot Springs this Friday to play a good Hot Springs ball club, and we want everyone to travel with us and help us get this win,” he said.