by Bobby Stapleton
Melbourne hosted Yellville Summit in a battle of teams sporting identical 2-1 conference marks last Friday night, and got back on track after suffering their first loss the week before. With Yellville Summit coming in on a two-game win streak, the game looked to be a good one. The Bearkatz wasted no time in asserting dominance in the game.
Melbourne took the kickoff and used the first drive of the game to take the lead. Melbourne got back-to-back runs by Silas Motes for 25 yards. QB Gabe Lawrence then hit Alex Bray for 23 yards down the right side. With a first and goal, Motes went right up the middle for the TD less than two minutes into the game. Blake Howard booted the PAT, giving Melbourne an early 7-0 lead.
The Bearkatz were backed up against the goal line, but flexed their muscles and held Yellville on fourth down, getting the ball back at their own 14. On second down, Lawrence hit Andrew Pitts for 30 yards and a fresh set of downs near midfield. After moving down to the Panther 32 yard line, Lawrence launched another bomb, this time a 32 yarder, to Pitts down the right side for the TD with a shade more than two minutes left in the first. After Howard’s PAT, Melbourne had a 14-0 lead.
Holding Yellville to a three and out, Melbourne’s third possession only needed five plays to pay off when Motes went up the middle for a 10 yard TD, putting the Bearkatz up 20-0.
Yellville finally got on the board with four and a half minutes left in the half after covering 59 yards in four plays, pulling to within two touchdowns.
Melbourne didn’t flinch and came right back. With just less than a minute the in the first half, Melbourne crossed the goal line when Motes bulled his way across from 11 yards out, setting the score at 26-6.
The defense kept Yellville from scoring on their first possession of the second half. The Bearkatz picked right up on offense where they left off, only taking four minutes to score their next touchdown that covered 80 yards.
The score came when Bray lined up as QB and sliced the defense, weaving his way from 15 yards out. On the two-point conversion, Lawrence hit Jordan Hawkes, making it a 34-6 Melbourne lead. Less than two minutes into the fourth quarter, the Bearkatz picked up their fifth touchdown on the night when Lawrence hit Tyler Dudra with a six yard TD strike. Howard booted the PAT, making it a 41-6 lead for Melbourne, which kicked in the sportsmanship running clock.
Yellville fired right back, only needing three plays for their second TD of the game but Melbourne, with the game in hand, didn’t let up. The Bearkatz ran six plays, with Aaron Pettyjohn getting five of those including the final one that covered 30 yards, and crossed the goal line with 1:45 left in the game. Howard set the final score at 48-14 with the PAT.

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SIDELINE TIGHTROPE: Melbourne’s Trestin Lawrence works the sideline for 11 yards on the pass play against Green Forest in last Friday night’s game. With the win, Melbourne qualifies for the playoffs. See full story and additional photos on page 6 in this week’s Pacesetting Times. Photo/B.Stapleton

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TAKING DOWN A CAVEMAN: Melbourne’s Trestin Lawrence tackles a Caveman during last week’s game. See full story and additional photos on page 7 in this week’s Pacesetting Times. Photo/B.Stapleton

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Junior High
Aug. 23 Scrimmage at Hoxie TBA
Sept. 1 Corning 7 p.m.
Sept. 8 at Cave City 7 p.m.
Sept. 15 at Southside Batesville 7 p.m.
Sept. 22 at Mtn. View * 7 p.m.
Sept. 29 Marshall * 7 p.m.
Oct. 6 at Clinton * 7 p.m.
Oct. 13 Yellville * 7 p.m.
Oct. 20 at Mtn. Home 7 p.m.
Oct. 27 Salem 7 p.m.
Nov. 3 Mtn. View 7 p.m.
* Conference Games
7th grade games begin at 5:30 p.m

Senior High
Aug. 22 Scrimmage at Hoxie TBA
Sept. 2 at Corning 7 p.m.
Sept. 9 Cave City 7 p.m.
Sept. 16 at Salem 7 p.m.
Sept. 23 Mtn. View * 7 p.m.
Sept. 30 at Marshall * 7 p.m.
Oct. 7 Clinton * 7 p.m.
Oct. 14 at Yellville * 7 p.m.
Oct. 21 at Elkins * 7 p.m.
Oct. 28 Green Forest * 7 p.m.
Nov. 4 Greenland * 7 p.m.
Nov. 11 Playoffs – Round 1 7 p.m.
Nov. 18 Playoffs – Round 2 7 p.m.
Nov. 25 Playoffs – Quarterfinals 7 p.m.
Dec. 2 Playoffs – Semifinals 7 p.m.
Dec. ? Playoffs – Finals TBA
*Conference Games

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SEALING THE LINE OFF: Melbourne’s Derek Love works on getting the line contained against Elkins last Friday night, November 14, during the opening round of the State Tournament. The Katz held on and let the 15-14 score stand up for the win. The Bearkatz head to Osceola Friday night, November 21, to take on the Seminoles in the second round of the State Tournament. See additional photos and full story in this week’s paper! Photo/B.Stapleton

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ROUGH AND TUMBLE GAME: Melbourne QB Conor Fogle crashes into the endzone for a touchdown against Osceola last Friday night. See full story and additional pictures in this week’s edition of the Pacesetting Times! Photo/B.Stapleton

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Melbourne Bearkatz Football
Senior High School
Aug. 26 Scrimmage at Mtn. View 6:30 p.m.
Sept. 5 Yellville 7:00 p.m.
Sept. 12 at Cave City 7:00 p.m.
Sept. 19 Salem 7:00 p.m.
Sept. 26 at Manilla * 7:00 p.m.
Oct. 3 Hoxie * 7:00 p.m.
Oct. 10 at Corning * 7:00 p.m.
Oct. 17 at Piggott * 7:00 p.m.
Oct. 24 Osceola * 7:00 p.m.
Oct. 31 Rivercrest * 7:00 p.m.
11/6 at Cedar Ridge * 7:00 p.m.
11/14 Playoffs Round 1 7:00 p.m.
11/21 Playoffs Round 2 7:00 p.m.
11/28 Playoffs Quaterfinals 7 p.m.
12/5 Playoffs Semifinals 7:00 p.m.
12/12 Playoffs Finals 7:00 p.m.
*Conference Games

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KATZ ACCEPT CHALLENGE: Bearkatz Varsity team members douse their coaches during the annual pep rally kicking off football season on Thursday, August 21 in Melbourne. The latest social media “Ice Bucket Challenge” has sparked a new awareness in ALS, and contributions to the research of a cure for the disease have been tremendous. Read more about ALS and see more photos of local challenges in this week’s Pacesetting Times!! Photo/C.Anderson

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Bearkatz on the line during practice on Monday, August 11.