Tigers stomp Hornets

Published 6:33 pm Sunday, October 26, 2008

The Poplarville Hornets held the Bay High Tigers scoreless for all but a minute in the first half of Friday night’s game in Bay St. Louis, but once the Tigers offense got going, they were unstoppable for 28 unanswered points on four consecutive possessions. In the end those four scores were too much for the Hornets to overcome in their 28-7 loss.

The Tigers scored fourteen points in the last minute of the second quarter, the first touchdown on a 27-yard hitch and pitch play, followed by a 2-point conversion to lead 8-0. On the Hornets first play on their ensuing possession, the Tigers recorded their first of four interceptions and immediately turned the turnover into a touchdown with a 45-yard touchdown pass on second down.

The Hornets actually got into the end zone first – twice in fact – on the same drive, but each time penalties negated the score. The subsequent field goal attempt was blocked by the Tigers.

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“All season long, we’ve been hurting ourselves,” said Hornets coach Chris Teal. “We had two holding penalties. Once we start doing that it’s all down hill. We would have been up 7-0 at that point.

“Our kids played hard. They play hard every week,” Teal added. “It didn’t turn out like we wanted, but I believe it’ll turn around for us. We’re doing things right. It’ll happen for us.”

The Hornets opened the game with an impressive offensive drive moving the ball well, picking up two first downs on a 39-yard drive, ending at the Tigers 32 yardline as the Hornets failed to convert a fourth and seven.

The Hornets defense held the Tigers to two first downs on the Tigers following two possessions, forcing punts to end each drive.

After the second punt, the Hornets were facing a second and seven from their own 12 yard line. That’s when the Hornets came up with their biggest play of the night as Aden’ Thomas followed blockers through the line of scrimmage and broke through a wide-opened secondary to outrun Tigers defenders for an 88-yard score.

But a yellow flag for the first big holding penalty brought it back to the Tigers 26 yard line. The Hornets remained poised as Dakota Shepherd kept for a 9-yard gain on second down. Then Ira White broke through the line for 12 yards for the score. But again, a yellow flag brought the play back to the 11 yard line. On the next play, Thomas was dropped for a loss. And on fourth down the Tigers blocked the field goal attempt.

The Hornets scoring drive came with just over three minutes remaining in the third quarter, following the Tigers final score. Starting at their own 33 yard line, Thomas ignited the drive with a 40-yard tote to the Tigers 27 yard line. Shepherd connected with Adam Naquin for a 19-yard completion to the Tigers 6 yard line. Gabriol Rhoda carried it in for the score on the very next play and the Hornets were on the scoreboard down 28-7 going into the fourth quarter.

Ira White led Hornets rushers with 136 yards on 20 carries. Thomas carried for 132 yards on 7 carries.