It was the earliest senior night that many Beebe fans can remember, but one that they might not soon forget as the Badgers rallied in the final three minutes to defeat Little Rock Hall 20-15 in the 5A Central Conference opener for both schools Friday.
After a scoreless first quarter, the Badgers scored first on backup quarterback Zack Grant's 3-yard touchdown run with 4:24 remaining in the second quarter. The extra point was missed and the Badgers led 6-0.
The Warriors could not move the football on their next possession and after penalties and near fumbles, Hall had to punt inside its 15-yard line. Unfortunately for the Hall punter, the snap was low and got away from him. The ball ended up going out of the back of the end zone for a safety with 1:31 remaining in the first half, and Beebe went into the locker room leading 8-0.
However, Hall head coach Jim Withrow dug into his proverbial bag of tricks as the Warriors scored on a 62-yard halfback pass with 8:21 remaining in the third quarter. The two-point conversion was good and the game was tied at 8-8.
That's how the third quarter ended. However, Beebe struck early in the fourth when junior quarterback Gannon Roberts found wide receiver Logan Stephens on a 21-yard touchdown pass with 10:51 remaining in the game. The extra point was missed and the Badgers retook the lead at 14-8.
However, Hall was not through as Withrow went exclusively with the run game and methodically moved the football down the field. Hall's Bijay Sisk scored on a 2-yard run with 2:53 remaining to tie the game at 14-14. The extra point was good and the Warriors took their first lead 15-14.
However, Beebe used a healthy dose of running, along with a costly face mask penalty on Hall, to move the football inside the red zone. Roberts went in from the right side on a quarterback keeper with 55.6 seconds left to give Beebe the victory.
The Warriors lost two fumbles, including one at the goal line in the second half that was recovered in the end zone by Beebe.
Roberts was 14 of 18 passing for 143 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Backup quarterback Zack Grant had 16 carries for 53 yards rushing. Stephens led the Beebe receiving corps with five catches for 74 yards and a touchdown.
Beebe (1-3) will host Maumelle next.