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No. 2 Richland Springs holds on for win over county rival Cherokee

Amy McDaniel
San Angelo Standard-Times
Cherokee High School's Eric Miller (35) fights for extra yardage while Richland Springs defender Landon Burkhart (22) attempts the tackle in a District 16-1A Division II game Friday, Oct. 16, 2020, in Richland Springs.

The Cherokee Indians came as close as anybody all season but came up short 84-81 against the defending state champion Coyotes Friday in Richland Springs.

Landon Burkhart scored from 47 yards out with 2:17 to play in what turned out to be the ultimate difference in a track-meet of a game that the No. 2 Coyotes led for the first time with 4:26 to play in the second quarter.

Burkhart ran for five touchdowns and passed for three for the Coyotes.

Tristian Arkansas passed for five TDs and ran for three for the unranked Indians, who led by as much as 10 points (24-14) at the end of the first quarter.

The Coyotes scored back-to-back TDs with less than three minutes to play in the first half to take the lead for good (52-44) and then scored the first points of the second half to put the game just out of reach, although the Indians pulled within one point three times before the game was over.

Arkansas passed for 304 yards and ran for 122 for Cherokee. Burkhart had 194 yards passing and 207 yards rushing for the Coyotes.

Cherokee led for much of the first half due to blocking a PAT kick on the Coyotes' first TD. Richland Springs later defended two PAT kicks that either missed completely or were picked up and run in by Cherokee for a single point, instead of the two points for a PAT kick in six-man football.

Richland Springs (6-0 overall, 2-0 in District 16-1A Division II) travels to Mullin on Friday.

Cherokee (5-3, 1-1) hosts Lohn Friday.

Amy McDaniel is a multimedia sports journalist. Send news tips to amy.mcdaniel@gosanangelo.com. Consider supporting West Texas journalism with a subscription to GoSanAngelo.com.