SP downs Desoto Central

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 8, 2011

SP places second in district after 42-7 win over DC

By Angie Ledbetter

The South Panola Tigers won district nine straight years but this year Olive Branch earned the title.

Even though it was not the way the Tigers envisioned an ending to their regular season, they wrapped up second place with a 6-1 record after slamming the Desoto Central Jaguars 42-7 Thursday night.

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It was the first time since 2001 that the Tigers did not win their district. Olive Branch took first place after defeating Tupelo 42-24 Friday night.

The Tigers will host Murrah from Jackson for the first round of playoffs.

“My focus now is the playoffs,” said Head Coach Lance Pogue. “We’re always been a good playoff team and we’ve always talked about it being 16 quarters to get there and this is the first 4 so we have to play it one at a time.

“Now the level on intensity and competition is out of the roof,” added Pogue. “In the playoffs you’ve got to be at your best and we have been the last six weeks even though we were a little sluggish tonight.”

“We were kind of flat tonight but sometimes that happens. We won and played a lot of guys tonight. All the seniors got to play also. I challenged the guys and we’re going to get back at it Monday and be excited about Friday night.”

The Tigers only scored once in the first quarter when Tony Conner took the ball from three yards out and Clayton Sibley added his PAT with 8:07 on the clock.

With 2:47 left in the quarter Sibley attempted a 34 yard field goal but it was short.

Pogue wasn’t sure why his team came out flat.

“You come out, its senior night, it’s Thursday and obviously Desoto Central has struggled some but you’ve got to motivate yourself. Maybe we didn’t do as good of a job in that area but to win 42-7 and be sluggish I’m proud of that.”

The Tigers got their act going late in the second quarter putting up 14 points. Ladarius Strong scored on a 10 yard run and the PAT was good with 2:03 on the clock.

Tevis Flowers connected with DeAndrea Harris on a 22 yard pass with 10 seconds left on the clock. The PAT was good and the Tigers had a 21-0 lead at the half.

The Jaguars had a 1st and 10 on their own 35 and Jemarcus Brooks intercepted the pass with 3:37 on the clock. That set up a touchdown by Strong when he took the ball in from the three and the PAT was good.  

The Tiger’s defense held strong and stopped the Jaguars. With 1:18 left in the quarter, Flowers connected with Ron Taylor for 34 yard score and Sibley’s PAT was good giving the Tigers a 35-0 lead at the end of the third quarter.

Pogue started letting younger players get game experience.

The Tiger’s only score in the fourth came at the 5:14 mark when Tavian Bibbs scored on an eight yard run and Sibley added his last PAT of the night.

The Jaguars got on the scoreboard with 1:56 left in the game when Austin Riley caught a 34 yard pass and the PAT by William Collard was good.

The Tiger’s defense played a big part in the game. They had 55 total tackles with 31 yards lost and 10 pass deflections.

At the top was senior Kendall Carr who ended the game with nine tackles. Stephen Sanford had eight and one pass deflection. Dashawn Lindsay had seven, Temario Strong six tackles, LaKeddrick Flowers and Nick Johnson five each. Strong caused one fumble and Brooks had one interception.

The Tigers had 421 total yards, including 332 on the ground and 89 was passing.
Desoto Central had 204 total yards.

Strong rushed the ball 10 times for 94 yards scoring two touchdowns. Conner had 86 yards on 14 rushes with one touchdown. Marcus Dixon rushed for 61 yards on 10 carries.

Flowers was five of 14 for 83 yards with two touchdowns and one sack.  Harris had three receptions for 41 yards with one touchdown. Taylor had two for 40 yards with one touchdown. Hunter Lawrence had one for eight yards.

Conner had one punt return for 20 yards.     

Pogue said it feels good to be playing the first round at home.

“It’s good we’re at home. I want to encourage our fans to be here Friday night. We need a lot of support and a great crowd. This team has fought so hard and gone through a lot so we need to get behind them. I’d like to see all of us join together because this team is going to give a great effort.”

Tickets for Friday’s game will be on sale Thursday and Friday at the front of South Panola High School.

Tickets are $7 and reserved seating is not sold for playoff games.

Ticket booth will open at 6 p.m. Friday.