Cardinals struggle in second half, lose to Badgers 41-21

Martavious Thomas (1) looks for the endzone as Trent Haygood (4) sets up a block. The Cardinals went scoreless in the second half. - Photo by Charlie Olds
Martavious Thomas (1) looks for the endzone as Trent Haygood (4) sets up a block. The Cardinals went scoreless in the second half. - Photo by Charlie Olds

After a competitive first half between the Camden Fairview Cardinals and the Arkadelphia Badgers, turnovers and missed opportunities led to the visiting team rumbling to a 41-21 win.

Despite turning the ball over four times and tallying an uncharacteristic five dropped passes, the Cardinals still gained over 450 yards in total offense. The bigger issue was that Arkadelphia finished with about 500 total offensive yards with the heavy majority of it coming through the air.

The Cardinals deferred to the second half and after an Arkadelphia penalty on the kickoff return, had the Badgers facing a third and five deep in the home team's territory. An off-sides on the Cardinals granted the Badgers a first down and they made the most of it by scoring on a 72-yard pass from Donovan Whitten to Latonnieo Hughes. The PAT was good as the Cardinals went down 7-0 early.

Throughout the half, both teams would trade blows with CF finding its way on the ground. By the end of the half, CF quarterback Martavius Thomas and running back Kennenth Langford combined for over 200 rushing yards. At one point, the Cardinals had a chance to go ahead when Matthew Davis picked off a Whitten pass, but the Cardinals would end up tuning the ball over on downs. Thomas would score with 2 minutes left before the half on a dazzling quarterback keeper before Nasir Khan added the PAT to tie the game at 21.

The Badgers responded by scoring on a 63-yard bubble screen and convert the PAT to go ahead 28-21. CF would threaten to score moving the ball within the Arkadelphia 30- yard line in the final moments of the half. CF attempted a field goal that went awry as the half ended.

The Cardinals' first possession of the second half would arguably their closest attempt to scoring again when a perfectly dialed up deep pass hit an open receivers' hands with the closest Badger 10 yards behind him. Humidity would began to take a toll on the Cardinals as well as several players began to cramp up.

While the half would conclude with the Badgers extending its lead, it wasn't all bad for the home team.

After giving up 28 points in the first half, the Cardinal defense only gave up seven-points in the second. Thomas was able to return to the game after being shaken up, but sophomore quarterback Darrell Atkins Jr. showed poise and completed a 10-yard pass in Thomas's 3-play absence. Fellow sophomore Trent Haygood was relied on heavily after Langford left the game and carried the ball well amassing over 120 all purpose yards.

The Cardinals will face the El Dorado Wildcats in El Dorado next week.

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