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Alma looking to clinch winning season Friday 10/24/22

Alma looking to clinch winning season Friday

By Kevin Taylor

Alma Schools 


Alma football coach Rusty Bush said the Airedales still have a lot to play for. 


Alma (5-3, 2-3) travels to Dardanelle on Friday to face the Sand Lizards. A victory would clinch the Airedales’ first winning season since 2017. 


Bush said the seniors have had plenty to do with the team’s turnaround, starting with a good off-season. 


“They wanted to have a great off-season and have a great season, and we have,” the Airedales’ coach said. “We still have two more and we want to go battle. Obviously, we have a chance to have a winning season.”


Alma had its post-season hopes dampened in Friday’s 45-30 loss to Prairie Grove. Down just 2 (16-14 at the half, the Tigers outscored Alma, 29-16, in the final half. 


“We’ve got to be upset for 24 hours,” Bush said following Friday's loss. “But the kids, they were in a good place after this game. I know they’re disappointed. But what a great group; they’re going to leave a legacy of toughness, of great character, and that just leads on to next year and the year after.”


Senior quarterback Joe Trusty got a pair of touchdown passes to Carlos Gonzalez and Matthew Schlegel. He also ran for two touchdowns. With Friday’s 211 yards passing, Trusty moved into third place with 3,316 passing yards and 41 touchdown passes. 


Noah Dotson holds the all-time record (4,572). 


Trusty’s early TD run helped Alma tie the game at 8. He hit Gonzalez with a 22-yard strike in the second quarter to bring the Airedales within 16-14. 


But some third-quarter penalties led to a slow second-half start, and two Prairie Grove touchdowns in the third quarter saw the Airedales trailed by 16 heading to the fourth quarter. 


“I told a couple of the seniors, what they do and the way they handle themselves, that stuff carries on - that’s stuff that people don’t see,” Bush said. “The seniors from last year, they carried on some legacies that the kids are playing with today. 


“I’m proud of our football program, and it’s great to be in Alma, Arkansas.”


Trusty has thrown touchdown passes to seven different receivers this season, with Gonzalez and Drake Stogsdill leading the charge with three apiece. Gonzalez, meanwhile, has accounted for 838 all-purpose yards.