Hornets beat Panthers, advance to third round of playoffs
The Poplarville Hornets battled extreme temperatures Friday night as the team took on the Quitman Panthers in the second round of the 4A playoffs.
The Hornets maintained possession of the ball for about the entire duration of the game as they coasted their way to another playoff victory.
The Hornets scored early in the game with a 22-yard touchdown pass by quarterback Clay Garrett. The ball was caught by wide receiver Will Holliday who ran into the end zone, putting the Hornets on the board with 7, Quitman 0.
With five minutes left on the clock in the second quarter running back Malik Lucas ran the ball for another Hornets’ touchdown, bringing the score, 14 to 0, Hornets.
With three minutes left in the half, the Panthers began to show some life. Quarterback Chauncy Carter threw a 31-yard pass to wide receiver Jaderous Avery to the Hornets’ 5-yard line.
Carter then ran the ball in for a Panthers touchdown, putting the team on the board for the first time Friday night.
Twenty-six seconds remained on the clock when tight-end Brandon McBride caught a 21-yard touchdown pass. The extra point was no good.
The score at half time was Hornets 20, Quitman 7.
Quitman began the third quarter by putting points on the board when linebacker Tevaruis Parker ran the ball into the end zone following a kick off return.
The score at the beginning of the half was Hornets 20, Quitman 14.
With four minutes left in the third quarter, Hornets running back Malik Lucas scored his second touchdown of the evening. The Hornets attempt a 2-point conversion and it was no good.
The Hornets wide back Zack Rice regained possession of the ball in the subsequent onside kick.
Hornets full back Jesse Pernell scored the final touchdown of the third quarter.
The score before the final quarter was Poplarville 33, Quitman 14.
Pernell delivered again at the beginning of the fourth with a Hornets touchdown. The extra point attempt was no good. The Hornets led the Panthers, 39 to 14.
The final score was Poplarville Hornets 39, Quitman Panthers 14.
Hornets’ Head Coach Jay Beech said he was excited about his team’s performance.
“Our players stepped up to the challenge and we controlled the ball,” Beech said. “Our time of possession must have quadrupled the other team. They played a great game against a great team.”
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