By CHUCK HATHCOCK
Second-year Kirk coach John McCrory will tell you quickly that his team likes to throw the ball more than they run it.
In Friday’s home game, the Raiders showed that against Lee Academy of Marianna, Ark. Senior quarterback Gunner Hudspeth threw for five first half touchdowns as the Raiders cruised to a 42-6 win.
With the win, Kirk improves to 1-1 on the season.
“I thought they our guys gave a great effort,” McCrory said. “We had trouble pulling away from them early but our guys kept playing.”
The veteran coach was also pleased with his team’s effort on the defensive side.
“I thought we did a much better job of tackling this week,” McCrory said. “It was good to get a win.”
Kirk scored on its first possession of the contest. The Raiders drove 57 yards in six plays for the first points of the night. Gunner Hudspeth capped the drive with a 31-yard scoring toss to Jordan Hobbs. Wilson Brandon kicked the extra point for a 7-0 lead with 9:23 left in the period.
The Raiders took a 14-0 lead scoring on their third possession driving 86 yard in five plays. Hudspeth connected with Zach Beckum from 36 yards out. Brandon’s PAT was good with 10:10 left in the half.
After stopping Lee on its next possession, the Raiders needed three plays to score again. Hudspeth found Andrew McDurmon open for a 43-yard scoring toss with 6:50 left. Brandon’s extra point made it 21-0.
Kirk used a seven-play, 50-yard drive to get their fourth touchdown of the night. Hudspeth had a 13-yard run in the drive and got the touchdown on a four-yard pass to Cole Crenshaw at the 1:50 mark of the half. Brandon’s PAT made it 28-0.
The Raiders would add a late half touchdown as Hudspeth found Crenshaw open on a 20-yard scoring play. Brandon again kicked the PAT.
In the second half, Kirk used their younger players. Their lone score came on a 30-yard run from Andrew Easter. Brandon’s PAT accounted for the final margin.
The Raiders return to action Friday hosting Winona Christian, who won a 46-6 decision at Columbus Christian. Game time is at 7 p.m.