Friday, October 29, 2010

DSU's miscues birth 31-7 loss to North Alabama

CLEVELAND — If there is an example that defense wins championships, Thursday night's showdown between Delta State and North Alabama was a prime example.
UNA's No. 1 rated defense grounded the GSC's top rated offense to claim to a 31-7 victory over the Statesmen (6-3, 5-2 GSC) in front of announced crowd of 5,123 on regional television.
"I think they came in here on a mission and we didn't match it," said DSU coach Ron Roberts.
The Lions' victory ended their two-game losing skid and gave them new life in the playoff hunt. UNA (7-2, 4-2 GSC) and DSU are now two of six GSC teams with a shot at winning the conference. Valdosta State and West Alabama currently lead the pack with a 4-1 conference record.
The defending GSC champion Lions came into Thursday night's GSC-TV Live Game of the Week allowing just over seven points per game. And they kept that average after allowing just one DSU touchdown, which came in the third quarter on a 27-yard pass from Micah Davis to L.J. Castille.
Throughout most of the game, everything that could go wrong for the Statesmen went horribly wrong. DSU was unable to convert a fake field goal in the first quarter; Matt Snyder missed two field goals of less than 30 yards; punter Tyler Caldwell mishandled a punt which led to a UNA touchdown; and Davis threw three interceptions, including two in the fourth quarter.
"We made a lot of mistakes.....We did a lot of things that you can't do to win football games, especially against a good one," said Roberts.
After losing their last two games mostly due to their struggling offense, UNA's offensive playmakers finally came to life and powered the Lions to the victory over the Statesmen.
DSU's secondary was unable to put a stop to the Lions' quick passes, as UNA quarterback Lee Chapple finished 19-of-28 for 220 yards and a touchdown. UNA running back Wes Holland also found his rhythm, rushing for 131 yards and two touchdowns on only 12 carries. Chris Coffey added a 4-yard touchdown scamper in the third quarter to give the Lions a 21-7 lead.
For the Statesmen, their only bright spot of the night was senior All-American running back Trevar Deed, who had 103 rushing yards to go with six catches for 51 yards.
Despite Davis' three INT's, the transfer quarterback did connect with 10 different receivers, with four of them catching six passes each.
DSU's defensive unit has now given up double-digit points in every game this season. Opposing teams have scored at least 20 points in each game.
The Statesmen have two games remaining, starting with Ouachita Baptist on Nov. 6. Then they travel to Lambuth on Nov. 13 to end the regular season.
Those next two games are crucial, said Roberts.
"We're in a do or die situation," Roberts said. "You go ahead and lay an egg next week and we're out of this thing — We're sitting at home."

NOTES: Micah Davis finished 31-of-55 for 278 yards and a touchdown to go with three interceptions. UNA outgained DSU 426 to 379. Bill Franks, L.J. Castille, Maurice Moore and Trevar Deed all had six catches each for DSU.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Morgan: MVSU football will return to Itta Bena in 2011

GREENVILLE — Mississippi Valley State football coach Karl Morgan said Monday morning during a SWAC teleconference that he expects Valley to play its home games at Rice-Totten Stadium in 2011.
Morgan said the $4.5 million renovations to the visitors side of the stadium is scheduled to begin in January.
However, the renovations will not be completely finished until 2012, said Morgan.
Due to financial limitations, the visitors side will renovated in phases. The first phase should be completed by September 2011 in time for MVSU to play next year’s home games at the stadium, Morgan said.
“They’re going to tear down the whole visitor’s side,” he said. “It’s going to be steel and aluminum....It’s supposed to be a lot nicer.”
Morgan also added that a meeting was held Monday afternoon regarding the renovations.
A message left for an official in the Facilities Management Department was not returned by press time.
This year, MVSU has played two “home” games at Greenville-Weston High School. Their final game at GWHS will be Nov. 13 at 1 p.m. against Alabama A&M.
Morgan said there haven’t been any major problems so far with GWHS hosting Valley’s games.
“It hasn’t been a big problem....It’s just a 45-minute ride (from Itta Bena)....The city of Greenville has done a great job of hosting it,” said Morgan.
Added Morgan, “Hopefully, we’ll have a better facility when all this is said and done.”
MVSU travels to Texas Southern this week for a 4 p.m. kickoff.

Monday, October 25, 2010

DTC Power Poll (Week 10)

GREENVILLE — The top five teams in the Delta Touchdown Club Power Poll remain the same after last week’s action.
Clarksdale (4-5) exited the poll after last Friday’s 36-29 loss to New Hope. Mound Bayou JFK’s 20-14 upset win over Simmons earned the Hornets a spot on the poll for the first time this season.
After defeating Riverside 30-7, Leland moved up one spot to No. 6 in the poll.
No. 1 Charleston and No. 4 East Side will face off Friday for their district title. Currently, they both sit at 4-0 in the district.
Leflore County won their district last week after defeating S.V. Marshall 22-18. South Delta, Leland and Riverside are battling for the remaining spots.
West Bolivar will have a shot at winning their district this Friday when they travel to Simmons.

1, Charleston (9-1)
2. Leflore Co. (8-1)
3. W. Bolivar (8-2)
4. East Side (9-1)
5. Greenwood (9-1)
6. Leland (7-3)
7. South Delta (7-3)
8. JFK (6-4)
9. Simmons (7-3)
10. Washington (5-5)

21 fourth quarter points birth Grambling's 35-14 over MVSU

GREENVILLE — It was a different day, but the same result for Mississippi Valley State.
Like their last “home” game at Greenville-Weston, the Delta Devils’ defense unit stood strong, allowing just seven first quarter points.
But three fourth quarter touchdowns Saturday by Grambling State (6-1, 6-0 SWAC) sprung the Tigers to a 35-14 victory over the winless Delta Devils (0-7, 0-6 SWAC).
MVSU coach Karl Morgan said he was proud of his team’s all-around effort, but he wants his squad to get over the hump before the season concludes.
“I thought the kids played hard and fought hard,” he said. “But we need to get some results at some point in time.”
For two quarters, MVSU stayed close with the nation’s No. 1 team, according to the Sheridan Poll. The Tigers had just one touchdown, which came midway through the first quarter on a 77-yard pass from Danny Reyes to Kiare Thompson.
And the Delta Devils held in check the nation’s No. 2 rusher, Frank Warren, in the first half.
Grambling held a 7-0 lead at halftime.
But Warren finally broke away in the third quarter when he broke loose for a 85-yard touchdown scamper. His second touchdown came in the fourth quarter on a 39-yard run.
By games end, Warren had surpassed the 1,000-yard mark on the season and racked up his second straight 200-yard rushing display. He finished with 209 yards on the ground.
Morgan said plays like Warren’s 85-yard run can’t happen in order for MVSU to get their first victory.
“There was some improvement, but still the same things that bothered us in the past bothered us today — too many big plays.”
MVSU did, however, have a couple big plays of their own — all thanks to lanky receiver Paul Cox.
The junior Louisiana native caught two touchdowns (86, 41 yards) — including one that bounced off a Grambling State defender.
Cox finished with three catches for 137 yards and two scores.
“That needs to happen if you’re going to win a game or two.” (Cox has) been a (one of) the threats we’ve had this year.”
Despite Cox’s efforts, MVSU’s rushing game was non-existent, with Tristian Hudnall leading all Valley running backs with just 26 rushing yards. Quarterback Oliver Hughes had 57 yards on the ground.
Meanwhile, Grambling picked up 257 yards on the ground, while Reyes went 11-of-15 for 259 yards and two touchdowns — to go with two interceptions.
Hughes was rushed from the pocket throughout most of the game. The transfer quarterback finished 8-of-22 for 194 yards and two touchdowns, plus two interceptions.
The Tigers outgained the Delta Devils 516 to 285.
MVSU has three more chances at securing their first victory of the season. But in order for that to happen, the Delta Devils need to find a way to play mistake-free football.
“We have to make (teams) earn what they get. If not, it’s going to be hard for us to catch up,” said Morgan.
Valley will be on the road at Texas Southern next Saturday for a 2 p.m. kickoff. Texas Southern defeated Jackson State on Saturday 21-18.

Leland shakes off slow start to defeat Riverside 30-7

AVON — The Leland Cubs shook off a slow start Friday night to stay alive in their playoff hunt after running away with a 30-7 victory over district foe Riverside.
The Cubs (6-3, 3-1) are tied for second in their region, while Riverside (4-6, 2-2 District) dropped to fourth. With a 4-0 record, Leflore County sits atop the region.
Although the Riverside Bulldogs fell short, they were the first to strike. LaDarius Goodman found an open Justin Short for a 50-yard touchdown pass to send Riverside to an early 7-0 lead.
But the Leland Cubs quickly answered with a pounding rushing game that opened up a 15-yard touchdown pass to Nicholas Mosby from Davantay Overton. Chris McWright converted the two-point conversion on a catch from Overton to give the Cubs an early 8-7 lead.
A stagnant first quarter ensued with several punts and an interception by Riverside’s Jermaine Henderson.
But just before the first quarter ended, Overton connected with Mosby again — this time on the first play from scrimmage — on a 58-yard touchdown. It marked Mosby’s second on the night.
Leland held a 14-7 halftime lead before sprinting away from the Bulldogs — thanks mostly to junior receiver / defensive back Kenya Dennis, who had two interceptions and a 70-yard punt return touchdown in third quarter.
Junior running back Arthur Morris added the final touchdown with a 50-yard touchdown scamper. Jamoros Barnes chipped in the two-point conversion run.

NW Rankin 23, GWHS 15
Brandon — The Greenville-Weston Hornets’ playoff hopes took a big hit Friday night after succumbing to a tough Northwest Rankin team.
GWHS (4-5, 2-3 District) is now tied for fourth place with Grenada; however, Grenada owns the tiebreaker because they defeated the Hornets earlier in the season.

O'Bannon 46, Williams-Sullivan
DURANT — The O’Bannon Greenwaves won their first district game Friday night after crushing Williams-Sullivan.
The Greenwaves (4-6, 1-2 District) are fourth place in their district behind West Bolivar, Simmons and JFK.

JFK 20, Simmons 14
MOUND BAYOU — Archie Dennard caught a touchdown pass and Damian Samuels rushed for another, but the Simmons Blue Devils suffered their first district loss of the season Friday night.
Simmons (7-3, 2-1 District) is now tied with JFK for second place. West Bolivar (8-2, 3-0) has the No. 1 spot.

Heritage Aca. 30, Washington 10
GREENVILLE — The Washington School Generals (5-5, 3-3 District) are now tied for fourth place in MAIS AAA District 1 with Magnolia Heights.
Washington will be on the road this Friday at MRA.

Coffeeville 37, St. Joseph 21
Charleston 62, Holly Springs 0
Ray Brooks 32, McAdams 0
Hernando 30, Gentry 18
South Delta 50, Bailey 0
Deer Creek 38, SIA 14
Leflore County 22, Marshall 18

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Gentry's Rufus Warren to play in all-star game

GREENVILLE – Gentry High tight end and punter Rufus Warren was chosen Thursday to play in the 62nd Annual Bernard Blackwell Classic all-star game.
The game, which has a North-South format, will be played Dec. 18 at Greyhound Stadium in Ocean Springs.
Warren, a Mississippi State commit, will suit up for the North squad.
Joining Warren on the 40-member North team will be Leflore County’s Debrandon Sanders, a defensive back, and Cleveland High receiver Jahmel McIntosh.
Broad Street’s Damarius Mitchell will serve as an assistant coach for the North squad.
Madison Central and South Panola paced all schools with three players each on the North team.
Head coach for the North team will be Kenny Burton, head coach at Ridgeland High. Meanwhile, Philadelphia’s Teddy Dyess was named the South’s head coach.

Friday (Oct. 22) HS schedule

Here's your Friday night schedule for Oct. 22

GWHS (4-4) at Northwest Rankin (7-1)
O’Bannon (3-6) at Williams-Sullivan (1-8)
Leland (6-3) at Riverside (4-5)
St. Joseph (2-7)at Coffeeville (3-5)
Heritage Aca. (2-7) at Washington (5-4)
North Delta (6-1) at GCS (5-3)
SIA (1-8) at Deer Creek (4-4)
Simmons (7-2) at JFK (5-4)
Hernando (4-4) at Gentry (3-5)
McAdams (4-3) at Ray Brooks (1-7)
East Side (8-1) at Ruleville (5-4)
Yazoo Co. (1-8) at Cleveland (3-6)
Russell Christian (2-6) at Bayou Aca. (4-5)
South Delta (6-3) at Bailey (0-8)
Rosedale (7-2) at Broad St. (4-4)
Clarksdale (4-4) at New Hope (5-3)
NSA (4-3) at Delta Aca. (1-5)
Pillow (7-1) at Jackson Aca. (8-1)

MVSU hoops picked to finish 7th

GREENVILLE — The Mississippi Valley State men's basketball team has been predicted to finish seventh in the SWAC, according to a poll released Wednesday by the conference.
After receiving 11 of 20 first-place votes, the Jackson State Tigers were chosen at No. 1. JSU went 17-1 in league play last season, but were upset in the opening round of the SWAC Tournament by University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff — who was predicted to finish second in the SWAC this year.
Texas Southern's Travele Jones, who averaged 17.3 points and nearly six rebounds last season, was chosen as the Preseason Player of the Year.
Alabama State's Chris Duncan was took home the Preseason Defensive Player of the Year honors.
MVSU did, however, have two players selected to all-conference teams. Amos Studivant, a junior, was selected to the first team. Senior guard Shannon Behling was tabbed second-team All-SWAC.
Meanwhile, JSU placed two players to each the first and second team. Rod Melvin, a junior, and senior Grant Maxey were selected to the first team while seniors De’Suan Dixon and Tyrone Hanson made the second team.
JSU is scheduled to open their season Nov. 3 when they host Miles in an exhibition game at 7 p.m.
MVSU opens their season Nov. 3 during an exhibition game against Victory at the Leflore Civic Center at 7 p.m. Afterwards, they’ll play Delta State Nov. 8 at the Washington County Convention Center at 7 p.m.

Thompson, Walker tabbed to coach in Mississippi-Alabama Classic

GREENVILLE — When the highly awaited Alabama/Mississippi All-Star Classic kicks off Dec. 11 at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, there will be two familiar faces on the Mississippi team sideline.
Simmons High's Carlos Thompson and Gentry's Jerry Walker were chosen as two of the six assistant coaches. The head coach will be M.C. Miller of Louisville.
Other assistant coaches include Bud Blackledge (Taylorsivlle), Chris Chambless (West Point), Buddy Duke (Prentiss) and David Parker (St. Martin).
Longtime Simmons coach Carlos Thompson has spearheaded his team to a 7-2 record — including five straight games by a combined score of 206-24.
Meanwhile, first-year Gentry coach Jerry Walker has led the Rams to a 3-5 record. Walker spent the last eight years at his alma mater, Ray Brooks, before moving to Gentry.
The lone player from the Delta region to make the Mississippi squad was Amanda Elzy’s Jermaine Whitehead. The 6-foot, 180-pound Mississippi State commit has been listed as a defensive back for the all-star classic.
Winona’s Chelarvez Brown also will suit up at defensive back.
The quarterbacks are Ben Stevens of West Jones, and Jacquez Johnson from Starkville.
The Mississippi roster is filled with future SEC and major college players.
Mississippi State leads all schools with ten commitments on the roster, while Ole Miss has two and Southern Miss and LSU one apiece.
The 40-man roster is an increase from last year’s 37-member team. The game will kickoff Dec. 11 at 1 p.m. and will be televised nationally on Versus. Special game week activities have been planned for players and coaches.
Alabama holds a 16-7 edge in the annual series, which began in 1988.

Monday, October 18, 2010

DTC Power Poll (Week 9)

1. Charleston (8-1)
2. Leflore Co. (7-1)
3. West Bolivar (7-2)
4. East Side (8-1)
5. Greenwood (8-1)
6. Simmons (7-2)
7. Leland (6-3)
8. Clarksdale (4-4)
9. South Delta (6-3)
10. Washington School (5-4)

GREENVILLE — For the fifth straight week, the Charleston Tigers remain the No. 1 football team in the Delta, according to the Delta Touchdown Club Power Poll.
Charleston (8-1, 3-0 District) defeated Independence 50-0 last week. The Tigers have shut out their opponents in six out of nine games. In the last five games, Charleston has won by a combined score of 248-8, with Palmer being the only team to score any points against a tough Tiger defense.
The top six teams from Week 8 remain at their same spot for Week 9.
Greenville-Weston (4-4, 2-2 District) exited the poll after giving up 20 fourth quarter points to Grenada in their 27-9 loss to Grenada (2-6, 2-2 District).
Taking GWHS’s spot on the poll is South Delta (6-3, 2-1 District), who defeated Riverside 45-0 Friday night.
Washington School’s 43-14 loss to Jackson Academy dropped them from No. 7 to No. 10. Meanwhile, Leland’s 44-8 homecoming win over Marshall moved them from No. 8 to No. 7.
Clarksdale went from No. 9 to No. 8 after defeating Gentry 19-12.

Friday, October 15, 2010

CVB pledges up to $250k for Sportsplex project

GREENVILLE — The Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau has pledged to give up to $250,000 over the next 10 years in the effort to make the planned Delta Sportsplex Project a reality.
The money, however, will not be used for the actual construction of the complex.
The CVB has pledged up $25,000 annually to the project, but the funds will be used only on “print brochures and advertising to help in the fundraising effort,” said CVB Executive Director Wesley Smith.
“Each year the Sportsplex Board and the CVB Board will meet to make sure we’re making progress - that’s one of the stipulations,” said Smith.
The $20 million planned Sportsplex Project will be located on 95 acres, encompassing the current Legion Field. There will be several baseball, softball and soccer fields, along with educational facilities and ample parking.
It will be a big boost for the local economy, said Smith.
“It’ll be good for the city and county,” he said.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Top recuit O'Bryant picks LSU

CLEVELAND - One of the nation's top high school basketball prospects made his decision Thursday morning.
East Side High's Johnny O'Braynt, 6-9 and 245 pounds, committed to LSU during a news conference in his high school gym.
The five-star recruit said he ultimately chose the Tigers because it "felt like home."
O'Bryant's decision, however, was not a total shock, as it was reported last week that he would be heading to Baton Rouge.
O'Bryant said his top three choices were LSU, Ole Miss and Maryland.
LSU, however, had to maneuver to get to the top, he said.
"This time last year, they weren't in my top three, said O'Bryant. "They worked their way in."
LSU has a history of grooming post players such as O'Bryant. Stromile Swift, Glen Davis, Anthony Randloph and, of course, Shaquille O'Neal got their start at LSU. And that history played a key role in his final decision, said O'Bryant.
At LSU, he'll also be joined by his former Jackson Tigers AAU squad teammates Andre Stringer and Jalen Courtney.
"He has a level of comfort with coaches and players that are there...," said East Side High coach Leroy Cotton. "All of that combined together - that's why he chose LSU."
So how hectic was the recruiting process for one of the Delta's most highly rated basketball prospects?
"It got very crazy. I got a lot of calls (and) emails," he said. "Now I'm glad it's over with."
Now with the big decision out of the way, he just wants to focus on his final season at East Side.
"Now I can focus on the high school season," said O'Bryant.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Friday (Oct. 15) Games

Grenada (1-6) at Greenville-Weston (4-3)
Williams-Sullivan (1-7) at Simmons (6-2)
Coahoma Ag. (3-4) at O’Bannon (2-6)
Jackson Aca. (7-1) at Washington (5-3)
Marshall (1-7 ) at Leland (5-3)
Winona Christ. (5-2) at Deer Creek (4-3)
Riverside (4-4) at South Delta (5-3)
GCS (5-2) at Marvell Aca. (3-4)
Ray Brooks (1-6) at St. Joseph (1-7)
Gentry (3-4) at Clarksdale (3-4)
Pillow (6-1) at Heritage Aca. (2-6)
East Side (7-1) at Holly Springs (1-6)
Charleston (7-1) at Independence (3-5)
Elzy (5-2) at Cleveland (2-6)
Bailey (0-7) at Leflore Co. (6-1)
JFK (5-3) at W. Bolivar (6-2)
Indianola Aca. (5-3) at Marshall (5-2)
Bayou Aca. (4-4) at Desoto (7-0)
Drew (1-6) at Shaw (2-4)
Ruleville (5-3) at Palmer (3-3)
McClain (4-4) at Greenwood (7-1)
Humphreys Co. (0-8) at Yazoo Co. (1-7)
Hamburg (2-4) at Lakeside (2-4)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

DTC Power Poll (Week 8)

1. Charleston (7-1)
2. Leflore Co. (6-1)
3. West Bolivar (6-2)
4. Eastside (6-1)
5. Greenwood (7-1)
6. Simmons (6-2)
7. Washington (5-3)
8. Leland (5-3)
9. Clarksdale (3-4)
10. Greenville-Weston (4-3)

Washington School takes charge in first-ever matchup with St. Joe

GREENVILLE — It took 40 years for St. Joseph Fighting Irish and Washington School Generals to schedule a game against each other.
It took only one half to see which was the better team in 2010.
The Generals (5-3, 3-1 Division) scored on every first half possession en route to a 49-7 victory Friday night over the Fighting Irish (1-7, 1-3 Division) in the first-ever meeting between the two private schools — located less than three miles apart.
Tailgating, fireworks and a special presentation of the game ball by a helicopter highlighted the much-anticipated showdown.
But Washington quarterback Eric Brozovich and the Generals were the main attraction once the game kicked off in front of an estimated crowd of 3,000.
Brozovich finished 9-of-10 for 151 passing yards and six touchdowns (one rushing).
“We played together as a team and everybody did their part,” said Brozovich.
St. Joe coach John Baker said he knew his squad would need an all-out effort to defeat a Washington School team that is now riding a five-game winning streak, and has scored at least 35 points in those victories.
“I kind of knew going into (the game) that they had a lot of offensive firepower,” said Baker. “They can run the ball real good, and they can throw.
“They kind of exposed our secondary a little bit.”
Washington forced St. Joe to punt on their first six possessions, before Fighting Irish fullback David Motten muscled in their lone touchdown from five yards out with 25 seconds remaining before halftime.
Brozovich threw four first half touchdowns to help the Generals capture a 42-7 lead at the break.
Dylan Elkins caught a 35-yard touchdown from Brozovich on Washington School’s first second half possession to cap off the Generals’ scoring.
Read Kelly and Andrew Steinle each had a touchdown reception. Hayden Lewis added two receiving touchdowns.
Lea Turner (83 rushing yards) chipped in a second quarter rushing touchdown. Ryan Gober led the way with 95 rushing yards for the Generals.
Washington outgained St. Joe 391 to 205.
Motten, Hunter McGaugh, Chris Taylor and J'Daylan Jackson led St. Joe’s rushing attack. Jackson also added two late-game catches for 52 yards.
Despite the loss, Baker said he was glad to see such a large crowd out to support the teams.
“The crowd support was tremendous. They stayed behind our boys through thick and thin,” he said.
Said Washington School coach Phillip Wasson, “The crowd was amazing. I think that'll happen every year.”
Next year's game will be at Washington School.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Community raises $70k for GWHS athletics

GREENVILLE — Earlier this year, community volunteers set out to raise at least $45,000 to rescue six Greenville-Weston High sports from suspension due to an $163,000 cut to the athletic budget.
The sports have since been reinstated and the group has raised $70,735, with $10,000 in pledges left to be collected, said Dr. Ilean Richards of the Mississippi Centere for Education Innovation.
So far, nearly 70 individuals and business have contributed to the effort to save non-revenue sports at Greenville-Weston.
The first of the once-suspended sports to take the field was the slow-pitch softball team, which began their season in May. In their first game, the Honeybees rallied back to defeat the O'Bannon Lady Waves.
Donations can still be made by sending funds assigned to the Special Athletic Fund to the Greenville Municipal School District, 412 Main Street, Greenville, Miss. 38702.

Girls soccer coach needed
Another once-suspened sport, soccer, is scheduled to begin practice next week, said Athletic Director David Barrow. But the school is still in search of a volunteer girls soccer coach. A volunteer boys soccer coach has been hired, he added. Their first game has been scheduled for Nov. 13.

Hornets on the radio
Thanks to athletic sponsors, Greenville-Weston High football games can now be heard on the WBAD 94.3 FM radio station on Friday nights.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Backyard Brawl: Washington School, St. Joe face off for first time ever

GREENVILLE — It's been 40 years in the making.
Despite the obvious bad blood between St. Joseph and Washington School, they both are straying away from providing any “bulletin board material.” But they’re quick to point out that Friday night’s matchup is no ordinary game.
“This is for every Washington School player who has ever put on a jersey,” said Washington School coach Phillip Wasson.
Washington School, who competes against private schools in the MAIS, has never faced off against St. Joseph, a private school that has always competed against public institutions in the MHSAA, in their 40-year history.
It’s been the talk of the town since the highly anticipated matchup was announced this summer.
“We’ve been wanting to (play against Washington School) forever,” said St. Joe quarterback Jacob Reifers.
And the now the St. Joe Fighting Irish will get their chance Friday night at 7 p.m. on their home field. Tailgating is scheduled to begin at 5 p.m.
Currently, the Generals (4-3) are riding a four-game winning streak, while averaging nearly 43 points a game.
Meanwhile, the Fighting Irish (1-6) got their first victory last Friday after defeating Drew 28-22.
And to add a spice to the plot, Wasson and St. Joe head coach John Baker formerly worked together as assistant coaches at Greenville Christian.
“It’ll renew some rivalries, in a sense," said Baker. “He used to coach the offense and I coached the defense. It's going be fun.”
Wasson said he’s expecting a large crowd of current students and alumni from both schools to attend Friday night’s game. And for those who can’t watch it, it'll be broadcasted live on for a fee. It’ll be available for free on the website beginning Saturday.
With the two schools located less than three miles away from each other, the players are quite familiar with each other.
“I have a lot of friends (at Washington School) and would love to play football against them. I’ve never done it before,” said Reifers, who accounted for four touchdowns last week against Drew. “It’s going to be an experience, a big experience.”
Said St. Joe running back/linebacker Chris Taylor, “We've been anticipating this game all summer.”
A win won't improve either team's playoff shot, but it will provide a year’s worth of bragging rights.
“Whoever wins gets that whole year to talk about,” said Wasson.

Monday, October 4, 2010

DTC Power Poll (Week 7)

1. Charleston (6-1)
2. Leflore Co. (5-1)
3. West Bolivar (5-2)
4. Eastside (6-1)
5. Greenwood (6-1)
6. Greenville-Weston (4-2)
7. Clarksdale (3-3)
8. Leland (5-2)
9. Simmons (5-2)
10. Washington School (4-3)

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Valley's late game heroics not enough in 34-13 loss to Prairie View A&M

GREENVILLE — Through two quarters Saturday, the Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils played their best football of the season. They went into halftime trailing the Prairie View A&M Panthers 3-0, while holding the defending SWAC champions to only 142 yards.
Unfortunately, there’s four quarters in a football game.
And Prairie View took advantage of that, scoring 24 third quarter points on their way to a 34-13 victory over MVSU in front of an announced crowd of 2,210 at Greenville-Weston High School.
In order to get their first victory, MVSU (0-5, 0-4 SWAC) will have to come out with a second half spark during the rest of the season, said coach Karl Morgan.
“(We) have to get a better start in the second half......To give up 31 points, 24 in the third quarter is bad, poor. You can’t win that way,” he said.
Prairie View (2-3, 2-2 SWAC) wasted no time after intermission, capping off a 57-second drive with a 17-yard touchdown run by Donald Babers (26 carries, 151 yards, two touchdowns) to take a 10-0 lead.
MVSU, however, didn’t have a reason to panic until the middle of the third quarter after the Panthers put up 14 points in a little over three minutes — thanks to Shaun Stephens, who caught two touchdowns from K.J. Black, taking a 24-0 lead.
A Jerry Lovelocke 27-yard fieldgoal stretched the lead to 27-0 by the end of the third quarter.
The third quarter may have belonged to Prairie View.
But the fourth quarter was all MVSU — specifically Adrian Martin.
The 6-foo-4, 184 pound Stockbridge, Ga. native caught two touchdown passes (19, 52 yards) from Oliver Hughes to tighten the lead, 27-13 with just over nine minutes remaining.
But that was as close as the Delta Devils would get as the Panthers marched away with the victory, capping off the scoring with Babers’ second rushing touchdown of the game — this one from five yards out with two minutes remaining.
MVSU quarterback Oliver Hughes, who struggled throughout the first half, finished with 112 passing yards and two touchdowns to go along with a interception. He went 9-of-22 through the air and gained 37 yards on the ground.
MVSU also had one of their best rushing outings, finishing with 135 yards on the ground. Christopher Watkins led the way with 78 yards on 16 carries. Stephen Roberts added 49 yards on seven attempts.
Martin had two catches for 71 yards and two touchdowns.
The Delta Devils knocked heralded quarterback Black out of the game for some of the second quarter, but he still finished with 230 yards and two touchdowns, going 22-of-37.
As a team, Prairie View outgained the Delta Devils 398 to 247. The Panthers rushed for 168 yards compared to the Devils’ 135.
Despite the loss, Morgan said he was glad the crowd come out to support MVSU — and he hopes to see them at the other two scheduled games at Greenville-Weston High.
“It was a good atmosphere; they had some tailgating going on. I thought it was positive,” said Morgan. “I enjoyed the fact that people came, and hopefully we’ll have more (fans) at the next game — which is against Grambling (Oct. 23).”

GWHS defeats Warren Central 8-3

GREENVILLE — They say a coach can really determine what kind of team he has by how they perform when the game is on the line. When it all really matters, a good team will rise to the occasion and get the job done.
Well, Greenville-Weston coach Todd Lott has to be quite proud of his team’s performance Friday night, after they fought off a late Warren Central run to come away with a 8-3 victory.
The win marked their second straight and improved their record to 4-2, keeping them undefeated in district play (2-0).
In Lott’s first year, the former 20-year Washington School coach has got his team thinking playoffs — something that hasn’t happened at GWHS since 2001.
Yet despite the obvious change Lott has brought to Greenville-Weston, he’s quick to dish the credit elsewhere.
“The staff has done an unbelievable job in preparing these kids each week,” said Lott. “My hat goes off to the coaching staff, because they basically won the game for us.”
Lott’s assistant coaches surely played a significant role in the victory — but so did shifty junior running back Donald Jackson, who finished with a season-high 199 yards on the ground.
“He’s a special kid,” Lott said. “And he’ll be the first to tell you that a lot of the credit goes to the fullback (Terrell Williams) and the offensive line who opened up some pretty good holes for him.”
The Hornets’ lone touchdown came on a 19-yard scamper by quarterback Willie Mosby. Mosby then connected with Williams for the two-point conversion.
GWHS has surpassed last year’s win total of three.
The Hornets’ two losses came at the hands of two pretty good teams: Clarksdale and Noxubee County, who played in the 5A championship game last year.
Few doubted that Lott and his staff would turn things around at GWHS — but did Lott ever think it would be so soon?
“We didn’t come here to lose,” he said. “There are some good players here. And coach (Larry) Dorsey has started building this thing and I’m reaping the benefits of a lot of his work as well.
“We didn’t know what to expect. We just knew we wanted to work hard everyday and get better.”
GWHS is scheduled to go on the road Friday, Oct. 8, to Vicksburg for a 7 p.m. kickoff. Then, they’ll be back home Oct. 15 to host Grenada.