By John R. Schirmer
ASHDOWN – Trailing 28-7 at the end of the first quarter, the Nashville Scrappers outscored Ashdown 49-23 the rest of the game for a 56-51 conference win over the Panthers.
Ashdown struck first on a 56-yard run. The PAT put the Panthers on top 7-0.
The Scrappers (7-0, 4-0 District 7-4A) responded with a 7-yard scoring run by Darius Hopkins, the first of 7 touchdowns for the senior. Jose Hernandez kicked the first of 8 extra points to tie the game at 7-7.
The remainder of the first quarter belonged to the Panthers (5-2, 3-1) as they scored on passes of 17, 20 and 20 yards.
Nashville closed the gap on 2 second-quarter scoring drives. Harris ran the ball in from the 10, and Hopkins scored on an 8-yard run to pull the Scrappers within a touchdown at 28-21.
However, the Panthers hit a 67-yard TD pass on the next series and extended their lead to 35-21.
Hopkins again closed the gap to 1 touchdown on a 17-yard scoring run.
Just as they did before, the Panthers came back with a 33-yard TD pass for a 42-28 lead.
Hopkins caught a 74-yard TD scoring pass from Tyler Hanson and sent the Scrappers into halftime with some momentum as they pulled to within 1 score at 42-35.
In the third quarter, Hopkins tied the game at 42-42 on a 3-yard run. Later in the quarter, he gave the Scrappers their first lead of the night on a 43-yard run. With Hernandez’s PAT, Nashville went on top 49-42.
Near the end of the quarter, Ashdown tied the contest with a 5-yard touchdown pass.
Hopkins put the Scrappers ahead to stay in the fourth quarter with a 7-yard scoring run that made the score 56-49, Nashville.
Ashdown added a safety in the closing seconds for the final margin of 56-51.
For the game, Hanson completed 13 of 19 passes for 143 yards, 1 touchdown and an interception.
Hopkins was the leading receiver with 4 catches for 88 yards and 1 touchdown.
CJ Spencer had 3 receptions for 22 yards. Zach Jamison had 2 catches for 19 yards, and Dominick Kight caught theball twice for 11 yards.
Hopkins was the leading rusher with 26 carries for 215 yards and 6 touchdowns.
Harris had 17 carries for 160 yards and a TD.
On defense, Dennis Scott had 8 solo tackles and 1 assist. Hunter White had 7 solo tackles with 4 assists and 2 tackles for losses.
Mace Green recorded 6 solo tackles, 2 assists and a tackle for a loss.
Jordan Summers had 6 total tackles, Xavier Nunally 4, Kailus Hughes 6, Ty Pettway 5, Davion Holmes 4, Michael Bevill 3 tackles and a TFL, Kight 5, Jordan White 2, Kirby Adcock 2 tackles and a sack, Garrett Gordon 2, Robert Dunham 2 and Triston Rhodes 1.
Hunter White intercepted 1 Panther pass and recovered 2 fumbles. Spencer had 1 fumble recovery.
Hopkins returned 1 kickoff for 50 yards.
The Scrappers ran 63 plays, compared to 71 for Ashdown.
Nashville had 518 yards total offense, including 143 passing and 375 receptions.
The Scrappers were penalized 9 times for 72 yards. Ashdown had 9 penalties for 81 yards.