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Hornets continue winning streak with 55-7 win over Oilers

By Nick Ray

Item Correspondent

POPLARVILLE – Only a lightning delay prior to kickoff slowed the offensive onslaught from the Poplarville Hornets as the team defeated the Heidelberg Oilers 55-7 Friday night.

Six Hornets scored touchdowns in the first half as they led 41-0 at halftime. Coaches and officials agreed prior to the beginning of the second half to have a running clock to expedite the game.

The Oilers ran seven plays on the first possession of the game before fumbling the ball away to the Hornets at the Poplarville 44-yard line. Two plays into the drive, Tyson Holston exploded for a 50-yard touchdown run. Ethan Spiers’ extra point attempt was good, as the Hornets led 7-0 at the 7:56 mark of the first quarter.

After a 46-yard punt by the Oilers, the Hornets started their second scoring drive from the team’s own 46-yard line. Six plays into the drive, quarterback Antonio Barnes ran a keeper up the middle of the field for a 30-yard touchdown. Spiers’ extra point was good; Poplarville led 14-0 at the 3:45 mark of the first quarter.

Touchdown number three began with an Oiler fumble at its own 35-yard line. Two plays later, Ethan Taylor ran 34 yards to the endzone. Spiers’ point-after-touchdown attempt was ruled no good, and Poplarville led 20-0 at the 3:11 mark of the first quarter.

The Oilers ran seven plays before being forced to punt the ball away to Poplarville. One play and 90 yards later, Chase Shears exploded for a Hornet touchdown. Spiers added the PAT and the Hornets led 27-0 with 18 seconds remaining in the first quarter.

The Oilers’ first drive in the second quarter ended with a failed fake punt attempt that gave Poplarville possession at the Heidelberg 27-yard line.

On first down, Barnes completed a 20-yard pass to Shears. The next play, Amahd Bolton scored from seven yards out. Spiers’ PAT was good, and the Hornets led 34-0 at the 10:26 mark of the second quarter.

Four plays later, the Oilers punted the ball back to the Hornets. Poplarville’s rushing attack marched 71 yards on 11 plays on its next score. Hunter Martin rushed from one-yard out for the Hornet’s sixth touchdown of the first half. Spiers’ extra point attempt was good, and Poplarville led 41-0 with 2:53 remaining in the second quarter.

The Hornets appeared to be marching for another score on a long punt return by Canaan Ray, however, a penalty nullified the play as Poplarville went into the half with a 41-point advantage.

In the second half, several Hornet reserves saw action and moved the ball down the field on its first drive before losing the football at the Oilers’ five-yard line.

The Oilers marched 95 yards for its lone score of the evening. A 12-play drive ended with quarterback Jaquerious Stevens running a left bootleg rush for four yards and a touchdown. Poplarville led 41-7 at the end of the third quarter.

On the first play of the fourth quarter, the Oilers’ kickoff was returned by Ray for a 90-yard touchdown. Spiers’ extra point extended the lead to 48-7.

The Oilers began another 12-play drive, but the possession ended with the loss of downs at the Poplarville 40-yard line. On the next play, Casin Sones ended the evening’s scoring with a 60-yard score. Candi Spiers came on field to attempt the PAT, and the kick was good. Poplarville led 55-7 with 2:22 remaining in the game.

With the victory, Poplarville improves to 4-1 on the season.