It was Homecoming at Eagle Stadium Friday night, and the students had enjoyed a week full of activities and fun.
Friday saw them in an assembly as the Homecoming Royalty were introduced, followed by a pep rally and the parade.
With the class floats now lining the perimeter of the stadium, the homecoming queen, McKendalyn Martinez, was receiving her crown. To the cheers of her classmates and a capacity crowd, Martinez fought through the health issues that have kept her away from the school most of the last two years.
Fighting through cystic fibrosis, McKendalyn has become a great example of the determination and optimism that define Eagle Pride.
After being hospitalized a week ago, her participation in the event was in doubt, but the amazing staff at Arkansas Children’s hospital went to work to make her dream happen.
Nurses volunteered to help, making sure her hair and nails were done, and the doctor granted a 16-hour pass, complete with an escort from the Angel One Ambulance crew who waited beside the field while she was crowned Homecoming Queen 2018.
Once the game kicked off, it looked to be a track meet, which ended with Cedarville winning, 58-23.
n the first quarter, Cedarville scored and went for two, and Paris answered with a touchdown and extra point of their own.
At the end of the first period, Cedarville led 8-7.
In the second quarter, both teams erupted for multiple scores, with the Pirates scoring on two runs of over 60 yards. Paris put up a passing touchdown on a pass from George Poole to Ben Haddock. Kong Yang is solid in the kicking game, making a 23-yard field goal to go with his extra points on the evening.
He is also taking significant snaps on the defensive line, a combination you may only find in 3A football.
Paris trailed 32-23 at the half, but they could not get back on the board the rest of the evening. Penalties stopped momentum at every opportunity, and Cedarville ran wild on the ground.
The Pirates amassed 419 rushing yards and six touchdowns as the Eagles look for answers defensively.
Blaise Woods rushed for 91 yards and Tyler Gierke returned a kick off 71 yards for a score.
Mequell Ellingburg totaled 12 tackles and Travis Bryant added 11.
This week the Eagles will travel to 3-3 Charleston for a rivalry game set for a 7 p.m. kickoff.