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Tide rolls past D’Iberville

By James Jones

The Sun Herald Item

D’IBERVILLE — Picayune made enough big plays to remain unbeaten.

Running backs Kardarius Cross and Gerrell Keaton each rushed for 115 yards and scored a touchdown as the

Maroon Tide beat D’Iberville 19-10 on Friday night at Warrior Stadium.

Picayune (2-0) remained unbeaten and will remain the state’s top-ranked team in Class 5A. The defending 5A champions are also first in The Sun Herald’s South Mississippi poll.

“It’s always hard to win at D’Iberville,” Picayune coach Dodd Lee said. “I thought our effort was good, but we need to work on the little things and improve.”

Cross, who also starts at cornerback, praised the effort of his Maroon Tide teammates.

“The offensive line pushed hard upfront and opened up holes for the running backs,” Cross said. “A lot of us play both ways. We know teams are always coming after us. But we’re not going anywhere.”

D’Iberville (1-2) abandoned its trademark running attack and relied on the passing of quarterback Andrew Bird.

The Warriors had success, reaching the Maroon Tide 20-yard line until Picayune linebacker Trey Wimbrow intercepted Andrew Bird to stop the red zone drive.

D’Iberville, however, took a 3-0 first quarter lead. Corey Ladner’s 22 yard field goal closed the first quarter. The drive started at Picayune’s 39, but the Maroon Tide’s defense kept D’Iberville out of the end zone.

Picayune stunned D’Iberville with a play-action pass to take a 7-3 lead 40 seconds into the second quarter.

Quarterback Skylar Bowman’s 14 yard TD pass to Zacherie Jordan gave the Maroon Tide a four-point lead. The Maroon Tide had three third down conversions on the drive.

The Warriors had another scoring opportunity, but Ladner’s 48 yard field goal attempt hit the crossbar with 8:05 left in the half.

D’Iberville’s defense withstood a Maroon Tide drive, stopping a fourth-and-four at the Warriors’ 21 with 2:56 left before halftime.

Picayune appeared content on running out the final 26 seconds of the second quarter. But Cross broke two tackles en-route to a 80-yard TD run with 13 seconds left and to lead 13-3 at halftime.

The Maroon Tide padded their lead to 19-3 on Keaton’s three-yard TD run late in the third.

D’Iberville received life when Cross muffed a punt with 2:29 left in the third quarter.

One play later, Bird and Rod Moore connected on a 19-yard TD strike to get D’Iberville within 19-10 after three quarters.

D’Iberville’s defense stopped Picayune twice inside the Warriors’ 30 during the fourth quarter to hang around.

But the Warriors failed to convert inside Picayune’s 30 in the closing minutes.