By Curtis Rockwell, Sports Editor
The Picayune Item
PASS CHRISTIAN —
Poplarville remained unbeaten in Region 8-4A play Friday night, and in doing so set up one of the biggest regular season football games in school history.
The Hornets ran roughshod past Pass Christian 49-7 at McDonald Stadium, moving to 6-1 overall and 2-0 in league play. The Pirates drop to 1-6 overall and 0-2 in the loop.
The win moves Poplarville into a home contest Friday against unbeaten and second–ranked St. Stanislaus Friday night on the Hornet campus in match-up that in all likelihood will be for the top seed in the region. The Rockachaws moved to 7-0 overall and 2-0 as well in league play with a win over Bay High Friday night.
Poplarville jumped out to a commanding 35-0 halftime lead and never looked back against the over-matched Pirates.
“We needed to work on correcting our mistakes we had against Moss Point last week,” Poplarville head coach Chris Teal. “We have to get better every week . We wanted to come out and play our game and set the tone.”
Jiquan James got things rolling for the Hornets, with a 15-yard scoring run mid-way through the opening period.
Just three plays later, Hornet linebacker Kenneth Dotson scooped up a Pirate fumble and scooted 21-yards for a touchdown.
Quarterback Chandler Ray hit Nigel Wood on a 53-yard scoring strike to open the second stanza, and on Poplarville’s next possession Rojae Raine worked his way 59-yards through the Pass defense on a 59-yard touchdown weave.
Raine extended the lead just before halftime with a 75-yard scoring scamper.
Cody Mikell was perfect on all five extra points.
In the second half, with almost all of Poplarvile’s starters resting, the Hornets got a 12=yard touchdown run from Dalton Padgett and a 38-yard scoring run by Stephon Hudderson.
Padgett is a recent transfer from Pearl River Central.
“I wasn’t worried about us looking ahead to next week,” Teal said. “Now we can start looking towards St. Stanislaus and we realize the task we have ahead of us.”
Friday’s game against SSC will be the biggest game ever to take place in Hornet Stadium since Poplarville began playing there six years ago, and the biggest game possibly for Poplarville since upsetting Petal in the first round of the Class 4A playoffs eight years ago in a game that took place at Dobie Holden Stadium on the campus of Pearl River Community College.