In a topsy-turvy showdown for the 2A-5 lead, Magnet Cove got the last topsy Friday night.
Magnet Cove scored a fourth-quarter touchdown for a 43-39 victory that clinched the conference title and the No. 1 seed for the playoffs.
The Eagles (7-2, 5-1) will host Bigelow on Thursday night in a showdown for the conference’s second or third seed for the state playoffs at Mission Field.
Conway Christian, playing possibly the biggest football game in its Arkansas Activities Association history, trailed 21-20 at the half, rallying from a 14-7 deficit on a pass from Tanner Stevenson and Chandler Ferrand and a deep pass from Stevenson to Andrew Dather. CCS stopped one Magnet Cove drive with a leaping interception by Byron Pascoe.
The Eagles led 26-21 early in the third quarter, trailed 36-33, then rallied to take a 39-36 lead early in the fourth quarter. Magnet Cove took the 43-39 lead with 4:34 left and made it stand up.
At Alma, the Panthers rallied the second half for a 36-20 victory over the Airedales to remain unbeaten and clinched the 5A-West title going into Thursday’s Judge’s Cup game against Vilonia.
The Panthers (9-0, 6-0) had a scare early, trailing 14-0 early and 14-6 at the half. Then they scored 28 straight points in the third quarter.
Quarterback Seth Peters did most of the damage, completing 17 of 29 passes for 229 yards and three touchdowns, then ran for 161 yards and two touchdowns. Garrett Johnson caught eight passes for 152 yards and two touchdowns.
Austin Fischer scored on a 70-yard run.
In the third quarter, Peters connected with Johnson for TD passes of 7 and 57 yards. He ran five and 69 yards for touchdowns. In the fourth quarter, Michael Samuhel and Dane Richard teamed for a safety. Sam Burchfield kicked four extra points.
At Huntsville, Vilonia responded to a drive for a touchdown after the second-half kickoff by Huntsville with a 57-yard pass from Alec Willis to Jake Steward to key a 28-14 victory.
The Eagles (6-2, 4-2) now travel to Greenbrier for a showdown with the undefeated Panthers on Thursday with state playoff seeding on the line.
Huntsville, which burned Vilonia early with a 68-yard touchdown pass, had drawn within 21-14 before the long pass connection. The Eagles recovered a fumble on their 6 with 6:16 left to thwart a final drive.
Vilonia scored twice in the first quarter, once on a 1-yard run by Steward that was set up by a pass from Willis to Wyatt.
Michael Atkinson added a 3-yard scoring run then pass 7 yards to Wyatt to give Vilonia a 21-7 lead at the half.
The victory snapped a two-game losing streak by the Eagles.
At Little Rock, Mayflower enhanced its seeding for the Class 3A playoffs with the 59-28 victory over the Wildcats.
Daniel Geiber rushed for 264 yards on 14 carries and had 110 yards on five receptions to lead the Eagles.
Adam Dycus completed 22 of 30 passes for 294 yards. Madison Chambliss caught four passes for 77 yards, Drew Duncan, eight for 56 and Taylor Garrett, three for 47.
Geiber scored on runs of 78, 15, 36 and 15 yards and also caught a 40-yard TD pass from Dycus. Duncan had a 4-yard TD reception and Dycus added a 1-yard run. Matthew Post booted a 33-yard field goal.