Saturday, September 9, 2017
BENTONVILLE -- Jadon Jackson ran toward the goal line with two Little Rock Central defenders in close pursuit and a third one closing in fast, but that didn't matter Friday night.
Bentonville West's junior receiver leaped high above his defenders, then made an incredible one-handed grab for his fourth touchdown of the game as the Wolverines rolled to a 48-14 nonconference victory over the visiting Tigers at Tiger Stadium.
"I just wanted to go out and make a big play for the team," Jackson said. "We had to make sure we put these guys in the dirt and put this game away.
"Coaches are just putting me in the best spot to help me help the team. I just try to do the best thing I can for the team."
Jackson finished with 170 yards on five receptions, including a 59-yard touchdown catch behind Central's secondary in the second quarter and his one-handed catch of 33 yards that gave West (2-0) a 45-7 lead with 8 minutes, 24 seconds in the third quarter. He also ran the ball out of the backfield and gave 49 yards on four carries, two of them being 1-yard touchdown runs.
His last catch also ended the night for Wolverines quarterback Will Jarrett, who finished with 235 yards on 9-of-18 passing and three touchdowns. His only other touchdown toss was a 21-yarder to Stefan Banda late in the second quarter to give West a 31-0 cushion.
"He's just a great player," West Coach Bryan Pratt said of Jackson, who already has gained major-college attention. "Will probably threw that ball late and into triple coverage. But with him, you throw it up there and you think you have a shot.
"We used him in multiple places. We wanted to use him in the backfield to put stress on their defense and get them in different situations. I felt like we had some formations we could utilize him a little bit, and I'm really proud of the way we played."
The Wolverines finished the game with 470 yards total offense, but unlike previous games, they sported a more balanced attack. West's offense ran the ball 35 times for 229 yards, led by Tyreese Smallwood's 146 yards on 12 carries.
After Jackson's first 1-yard run gave West a 7-0 lead with 7:53 left in the first quarter, Smallwood -- who moved from Pennsylvania and joined the team in mid-July -- set up Blake McDoulett's 32-yard field goal with a 67-yard run deep into Central territory. His 2-yard touchdown run midway in the second quarter was set up by back-to-back passes of 41 and 37 yards from Jarrett to Jackson, and his 40-yard run to start the second half set up Jackson's second 1-yard run.
"He's not bad," Pratt said of Smallwood. "He's really growing and getting to where we want him to be. He's still got a little ways to go."
Sports on 09/09/2017
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