picayune pops Pascagoula

Published 7:45 pm Saturday, September 20, 2008

By CURTIS ROCKWELL

Item Sports Editor

Last year, Picayune and Pascagoula weren’t able to renew their series on the gridiron due to threatening weather.

Friday night, the visiting Panthers found themselves in the eye of an even more powerful storm.

The Maroon Tide controlled the game from the very beginning, jumping out to a quick 14-0 advantage and eventually dispatching Pascagoula 42-13 in the final game that each team will face before opening league play.

Picayune moves to 3-1 on the year with the win, while the Panthers drop to 1-2. It was the first time in six seasons that the teams have met.

“We played pretty well, even though we can still play better,” Picayune head coach Dodd Lee said. “We still have to get better. That’s what it is all about.”

Pascagoula head coach Scott Sisson was impressed by the Maroon Tide.

“They had our defense on skates all night,” Sisson said. “We couldn’t stop their running game. They beat us up front.”

And that whipping began early, as the Maroon Tide jumped out to early leads of 14-0 and then 28-7 at halftime.

The Maroon Tide rushed for over 350 yards, as both tailback Jamal Hall and fullback Gabe Hinojosa each scored a pair of touchdowns and both cracked the 100 yard plateau.

“There were some things in the running game we thought we could take advantage of,” Lee added. “Our line did a good job.”

In addition to Hall and Hinojosa, Maroon Tide quarterback Jacob Kennedy ran for one score and threw for another.

“He’s making good progress,” Lee said, of his junior signal-caller.

The Tide wasted no time in taking a lead they would never relinquish, as Hinojosa capped the opening drive with a 5-yard run.

After Reggie Bailey rcovered a Panther fumble moments later, the Tide took a 14-0 lead as Kennedy kept from 3-yards out.

Nick Riso was a perfect sis for si on extra point tries.

The sophomore Hall, who ran for 144 yards on the night, then tallied a pair of scoing runs in the second quarter, both from 4-yards out.

Pascagoula got two long scoring passes from Timmy Johnson to Marquez Thompson, one from 62 yards out and the other from 59 yards away. The second made the count 28-13 mid-way through the third frame.

But Picayune answered, as Hinojosa score on a 9 yard run to open the final period. The senior fullback ran for 124 yards on the night.

Kennedy hooked up with speedy Jonathan Moore on a 47 yard bubble screen pass to end the scoring.

The Tide had the ball inside the Panthers 10 yard line for several plays at the end of the game, but Lee told his troops to kneel on the ball to run out the clock.

The Tide opens Region 8-4A play by hosting arch-rival Pearl River Central Friday.

“We are a little beat up, but we have to be ready,” Lee concluded.