Poplarville plows over Wildcats, 23 – 7

Published 12:02 am Saturday, October 3, 2015

Poplarville — The Poplarville Hornets swarmed past their competition Friday night during their homecoming game against the Greene County Wildcats, 23-7.

Despite the cooler weather, the stands were heated with excitement as the Hornets played their first district game against the Wildcats.

In the first quarter, the Hornets started out strong after junior fullback Jesse Pernell scored a touchdown with 7:42 remaining, which brought the score to 7-0. With more than three minutes remaining in the first quarter, the Wildcats had the ball but Hornets running back Tyson Holston tackled Wildcats junior Quent Watts at the 40-yard line. The Wildcats caught up to the Hornets with 1:42 remaining when Wildcats senior outside linebacker Tyler Green scored a touchdown, which resulted in a tie at the end of the quarter, 7-7.

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During the second quarter, Pernell took the ball and dashed down mid-field but was tackled by a Wildcat with 7:40 remaining. Later on in the game, Pernell brought the ball to the 15-yard line. As a result, junior kicker Nicholas Kirschbaum performed a successful field goal, which brought the score to 10-7. 

After the Hornets recovered a fumble, sophomore tailback Austin Bolton scored a touchdown with 2:44 remaining, bringing the total score to 16-7.

Throughout the third quarter, the Hornets were unwavering, refusing to allow the Wildcats a touchdown. The quarter ended at 16-7. During a play, Pernell was injured and was escorted off the field on foot but quickly returned to the field minutes later. During the fourth quarter, Pernell had the ball but was tackled twice on separate occasions by the Wildcats. Toward the end of the quarter, Bolton ran nearly 60 yards for a touchdown, which resulted in the final score, 23-7.

Jay Beech, head football coach, said he was proud of his team’s performance.  

“I was worried, Greene County has a great winning tradition. We knew they were going to come in here and play really hard. So we’re glad our kids played really hard as well, defense stepped up and played well all night and offense played it tough,” Beech said.

Friday’s win brought the Hornets’ record to 4—2.

Next Friday, the Hornets—which rank 59th in the state— will face the Aggies at Forrest County Agricultural High School, whom rank 142nd, for their second district game. The Aggies were still playing Friday’s at press time, but lost their Sept. 18 game to West Marion 26-14. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.

Beech expects the competition to be tough.

“Their kids know how to play hard, they got expectations for Forrest county to win, so I know it’s going to be a battle next week,” Beech said.