Tide survives

Published 2:10 am Sunday, October 23, 2011

It took Picayune less than two minutes to lose a game last week.

On Friday, it took the Maroon Tide less than three to win one.

Homestanding Picayune scored a pair of touchdowns in a three minute span that closed the first half and began the second, overcoming a 7-6 deficit in the process en route to a 19-17 win over East Central.

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The win puts fifth-ranked Picayune at 7-2 overall and 4-1 in Region 4-5A play, while the loss drops East Central to 5-4 overall and 1-4 in region action.

“It was a big win for us, one we needed,” Picayune veteran head coach Dodd Lee, whose team saw a 22-6 lead against Moss Point disappear last week, said. “They came out and showed us a lot of new sets early on, and it took us some time to adjust. But our kids hung in there and fought hard and came away with a win.”

After a scoreless first period, Picayune’s Preston Dedeaux scored on a 24-yard run on the first play of the second  stanza to put the Maroon Tide up 6-0. The point-after was no good.

The Hornets moved the ball effectively on the ground against Picayune for most of the first three quarters. Antwon Wells scored on the ensuing ECHS possesion, and Andrew Canterbury’s PAT made it 7-6 Hornets.

After Canterbury missed a 35-yard field goal with just under two minutes to play before halftime, the Tide struck quickly before intermission as Ben Hickman hit Nolan Fletcher on a 66-yard scoring strike to put Picayune up 12-7 at halftime.

The Tide then took the opening kickoff in the third quarter, and Desmond Taylor ran 65-yards to paydirt on the third play of the second half, putting Picayune up 19-7.

The Hornets answered on a 54-yard scoring pass from Justin Plummer to Easton Marshall less than two minutes later.

Canterbury booted a 28-yard field goal later in the period, but that would be as close as the Hornets would  get as the Maroon Tide controlled the ball for almost 10 minutes in the final period and the Maroon Tide defense came up with three bigs stops after Canterbury’s field goal.

Micah Fairley finished with 109 yards rushing for the Hornets, while Dereonte Magee had 121 for Picayune on the ground.

“We were able to convert on some third and longs early in the game that we couldn’t later in the game,” ECHS head coach Marcus High said. “Picayune is a very good team and they made some adjustments when they had to.”

The Hornets host West Harrison Friday, and Picayune travels to Long Beach in a battle for region supremacy