NP Jr. High Football

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 21, 2010

North Panola Jr. High running back Justin Conner (right) dodges a Byhalia defender and breaks to his left to pick up some yards Thursday night. North Panola shut out Byhalia 14-0. The Panolian photo by Myra Bean

Cougars shut out Byhalia

By Myra Bean

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The North Panola Jr. High football team is walking through opponents.

The Cougars shut out Byhalia 14-0 in a tough matchup Thursday evening. This was the second straight shutout for the Cougars this fall. On September 9 they shut out Coldwater. On September 2 they defeated Tunica 33-20.

The game was scoreless at the half.

North Panola threw an interception in the first quarter and forced Byhalia to turn the ball over on downs. Tackling for the Cougars were Dequarius Lee and Martavious Lantern.

The Cougars had a touchdown negated on a holding call in the second quarter.

Byhalia still struggled to move the ball against the Cougar defense led by Virgil Jones and Willie Hibbler who were the tacklers in that quarter.

On the first play from scrimmage for the Cougars in the third quarter, Justin Conner broke up the middle for a 70-yard touchdown run with 3:53 left in the quarter. He also scored the two-point conversion for the 8-0 lead.

Jones, Hibbler and Jatavious Farmer were responsible for shutting down the Byhalia defense in the third quarter.

Byhalia had the ball going into the fourth quarter but Farmer and Kevin Merrell had back-to-back tackles for a combined loss of six yards to put Byhalia in a bind. Another tackle by Willie Hibbler on third and 11 limited the play to a one-yard gain. Byhalia tried to convert on fourth and 10 but were short one yard and turned the ball over on downs.

The Cougars’ final touchdown came at the hands of Farmer on a 52-yard run. He got the ball on the Cougar 48-yard line and ran all the way to the right sideline, then cut back through the defenders and ran all the way to the left side line, angling toward to the end zone. He finally was able to toe the left sideline and outrun the defense to score with 2:25 left in the game. The two-point pass attempt failed.

It will be an inner-county matchup when the Cougars head to Pope Bulldog country Thursday for a game starting at 5 p.m.