TATUM — Landon McKinney accounted for a quartet of touchdowns — four rushing and one passing — and the Sabine Cardinals remained unbeaten on the year with a 52-41 District 8-3A Division I win over the Tatum Eagles on Friday.
The Cardinals move to 5-0 overall with the win in their league opener. Tatum drops to 2-4 and 1-1.
McKinney scored late in the first quarter on a 1-yard run to cap a 10-play, 66-yard drive and Fernando Jaimes booted the extra point at the 3:46 mark to give the visiting Cardinals a 7-0 lead.
Two minutes later the Cardinals blocked a kick and took over possession, and Brannigan Willige turned the opportunity into points with a 14-yard run for a 14-0 Sabine lead.
Willige’s 3-yard TD run 25 seconds into the second quarter moved the Cardinal lead to 21-7, but Decartiyay Allison scored on an 11-yard run with 5:47 to play in the half to get the Eagles on the board.
A 73-yard pass from McKinney to A.J. Gresham with 1:26 to play in the half boosted the Cardinal lead to 28-7, but the Eagles scored with under a minute to play when Kendric Malone tossed a 50-yard scoring strike to Jayden Boyd to make it 28-14 at the break.
Allison’s 23-yard touchdown run 1:10 into the second half pulled the Eagles to within a touchdown (28-21), but McKinney scored on a 1-yard run with 8:33 left in the third and Jaimes booted a 28-yard field goal three minutes later as the Cardinals built a 38-21 cushion.
Malone and Boyd hooked up for another touchdown pass at the 3:05 mark of the third, and as time expired in the quarter Malone scored from 7 yards out as the Eagles narrowed the deficit to 38-35 heading into the final period.
McKinney’s 6-yard touchdown run at the 6:43 mark moved Sabine back in front by 10 (45-35), and after Malone hit Kendal Williams on a 13-yard TD pass with 4:21 remaining, McKinney scored on a 31-yard run with 2:32 to play to ice the victory for the Cardinals.
Sabine will host Winnsboro on Friday. Tatum has an open date.