North Panola FB vs Kennedy

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 23, 2011

Cougars to host Kennedy High School tonight

By Myra Bean

The North Panola football players have good attitudes, according to head coach Robert Hunter.

The Cougars (0-4) lost by one point to South Pontotoc last week, 24-25, but should have won, the first year coach said.

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“We normally average eight or nine penalties a game,” Hunter said. “Friday, we were hit with 18 penalties for 106 lost yards. That is unlike us.”

North Panola welcomes Kennedy High School of Mound Bayou (4-1) tonight for the last non-conference game of the season at 7:30 p.m.

Two years, North Panola defeated the Hornets 34-6 when Kennedy had a team of freshmen and sophomores under then first year coach Sheldon Hodge.

That team has grown over the years and handed North Panola a 25-8 loss last year. This year it is led by the junior and senior classes.

“They are a good team this year,” Hunter said. “We should be able to beat them.”

Kennedy is expected to finish at the top in district 3-2A this year. Hodge took the mainly passing team and turned it into a team with a running attack.

The team is averaging 234 rushing yards and 131 passing yards per game. They have scored 177 points this year and given up 64 for a 35.4 scoring average.

The Hornets are led by senior quarterback Samodrian Melton. Melton has completed 37 of 49 passes for 654 yards and eight touchdowns this season. He has thrown three interceptions. Melton has 54 carries for 375 yards and four rushing touchdowns.

Another offensive weapon for Kennedy is senior fullback Larry Mitchell who has 57 carries for 490 yards and four touchdowns.

Kennedy’s only loss this season was to Bruce in the season opener 48-19. They rebounded and defeated Holly Springs 40-0; Amanda Elzy 45-16; Humphreys County 41-0; and Leland 32-0.

Though Hunter said the team should win, he knows it will be “hurdle” because the team feels it should have won last week.

The Cougars will be without defensive lineman Izear Farmer, who experienced a right ankle injury last week.