Hatcher leads PA to Class 5A title over LR McClellan

Hatcher leads PA to Class 5A title over LR McClellan

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Layne Hatcher ran for two touchdowns and passed for three more to lead the Pulaski Academy Bruins to 50-30 victory over the Little Rock McClellan Lions in a meeting of conference rivals in the Arkansas Class 5A championship game Friday night at War Memorial Stadium.

Hatcher twice scored on 5-yard runs as Pulaski Academy (14-0) repeated as champs. He threw touchdown passes of 28, 20 and 16 yards to Zackary Kelly. Hatcher finished 22 of 36 for 251 yards.

PA's 150-pound junior running back, Jaren Watkins, was named the game's most valuable player after running for 172 yards on 17 carries, including a 75-yard score. He also caught three passes for 26 yards.

The Bruins trailed 30-29 at halftime after defensive lineman Raoshun Young returned an interception 28 yards for a score with 39 seconds left in the half. Trenton Lewis ran in the two-point conversion lead for the Lions (10-3).

Kelly scored on a 2-yard run with 1:06 left in the third quarter as the Bruins went ahead to stay.

Pierre Strong ran for two touchdowns - on runs of 51 and 8 yards - and his first-quarter fumble was picked up by teammate Jaylin Cunningham, who ran it 28 yards for a touchdown. Strong finished with 123 yards on 18 carries.

PA won the regular season meeting between the teams, 41-30.

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