Hornets roll Stone 35-12

Published 8:01 am Saturday, September 12, 2015

By Chris Marquette

The Picayune Item

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You could hear the deafening roar of the crowd and see the momentum shift in Poplarville’s favor late in the third quarter when the Stone’s Marcus Knott fumbled in his own end zone. Hornet senior Tyler Fricke quickly recovered the ball resulting in a touchdown and after the PAT—a 21-12 lead at A.L. Memorial Stadium on the campus of Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College.

“That was huge, we needed it …we got that turnover and it really gave us the momentum,” Coach Jay Beech said.

Coach Beech’s team never looked back as they polished off Stone 35-12.

Immediately following the fumble recovery, the Hornet defense continued to live in Stone’s backfield. Jamerrick Waller quickly penetrated Stone’s offensive line and forced a fumble, which was scooped up by Tristan Nichols. Waller had himself a night—he recorded a sack later in the fourth quarter.

Poplarville cemented the win with the help of rushing touchdowns by Austin Bolton and Zach Rice.

The Hornets ran the ball early and often. They relied heavily on the legs of Bolton and bruising runner Jesse Pernell. Bolton had two touchdowns and Pernell logged one and numerous first downs. However, controlling the football was a concern.

“I think they played well, I think we had a little ball security issue, but they’re playing hard and it is kind of slick out here. We’re gonna have to work on ball security.

Coach Beech was pleased with the overall effort his team gave, but noted that they have a lot to improve upon.

“I’m extremely proud of them. We had a lot of penalties, we had turnovers in the red zone and we could have let that affect us, but we paid it no mind and kept rolling. We played great on special teams, our effort on special teams was fantastic—I’m just proud of them,” he said.

The win gets the Hornets back to .500 as they are now 2-2. And is a huge step forward as the season progresses.

“It gives us confidence, Stone is a good football team, a 5A football team and it just reiterates to our kids that we are a good football team. We can still make a run at this thing,” Beech said.

The Hornets play at Hancock next Friday.