The Greenwood Bulldogs opened the season with nonconference win over the 7A Northside Grizzlies in Fort Smith Friday night. The Bulldogs struck first with two touchdowns in the first quarter, the first by Luke Hales, who ran it in from three yards out with 4:15 left on the clock and then Devin Gilbert on a 17 yard pass from Conner Noland into the endzone. Both point after kicks failed, however the Bulldogs were up 12-0 and had the momentum going into the second quarter.
Greenwood scored their third unanswered touchdown early in the second quarter on a pass from Hales to Kenny Wood for a 35 yard score with Grant Ennis finding his mark and punching the PAT through to make the score 19-0. It looked as though the Bulldogs were going to route the Northsiders until they made a TD of their own. Greenwood answered quickly with Wood running the ball in from the one yard line to put the Dogs up 26-8. The Grizzlies scored in the final minutes of the second quarter to make the score 26-15 going into halftime.
Northside scored the only points in the third quarter on a 15 yard field goal to keep the dogs close 26-18.
During the final quarter of the game the Bulldogs scored early on a 41 yard pass from Hales to Ethan Escalante. Northside had one last score to bring the final score to 33-25 to bring the Bulldogs total to 20-3 against 7A teams.
Conner Noland and Luke Hales passed fro 261 yards. Hales also led in rushing yards with 104 yards followed by Wood with 92.
“That was a hard fought game,” said Head Coach Rick Jones. “Northside was ready. They played hard, they played fast and they gave us nothing easy. I was proud of how the kids played. The defense played with great effort. They have to. We are undersized, we are not as fast as we want to be in some places. You just have to play with guts, heart and determination. That is what Bulldog football is all about.”
Greenwood will continue their fight with 7A teams as they take on Southside High School in Fort Smith Friday night.