Izard County beats Rector to win 2022 8-Man State Championship

The Cougars beat Rector 36-26 in the 8-Man State Championship.
The Cougars beat Rector 36-26 in the 8-Man State Championship.(Source: KAIT)
Published: Dec. 1, 2022 at 10:41 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 2, 2022 at 9:50 AM CST
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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KAIT) - Cougars were guaranteed to make history Thursday night at War Memorial Stadium. Izard County (9-2) beat Rector (8-3) 36-26 in the 8-Man State Championship. ICC won it all in their first season of varsity football.

Rector jumped out to a 14-0 lead after 1. Drew Henderson had a pair of touchdown runs and 2 point conversions. Izard County put up 20 points in the 2nd to take a 20-14 halftime lead. The Cougars in blue tied it at 20 in the 3rd quarter, but the Cougars in black pulled ahead for good.

Malachi Cruz earned MVP honors after a monster performance on both sides of the ball. The Izard County WR had 13 receptions for 144 yds & 4 TD on offense. Cruz tacked on 24 tackles and 3 TFL on defense. ICC QB Wyatt Buchanan threw for 331 yards and 5 scores. Tyler Hill had 8 grabs for 159 yards and a TD, he had a key tackle along with an interception in the 4th quarter to ice an ICC victory.

Big Blue had plenty of ground game, rushing for 336 yards as a team. Henderson had 37 carries for 163 yards and 4 TD. Jacob Cox rushed for 135 yards on 24 carries.