SP held scoreless in scrimmage with Meridian and West Point
By Ike House
Football season is not technically in yet but in Panola county it is. Friday night South Panola finished off spring practice by traveling to West Point to face West Point and Meridian. The varsity came back scoreless.
Meridian 7, South Panola 0
The first varsity game for the Tigers was against Meridian as they fell 7-0. The Tigers could not move the ball but the defense looked great. A lot has changed on defense including the long-awaited return of Janari Dean who has not played in a high school game or been in pads since his freshmen spring.
He made his biggest play in two years with a huge hit that ended a drive for the Wildcats. The Tigers got the ball back but were forced to punt. After getting the ball back, the Wildcats ran into a Tiger defensive front where it was hard for them to move. Also Tiger lineman Cordarrius Pride was handing out sacks.
When Meridian got the ball back again they capped a nine-play drive with a 16-yard run for the 7-0 lead after the PAT.
Neither team could move the ball offensively after that and that is how the game ended.
In the end, Tiger quarterback Anterio Draper went 6-for-18 for 41 yards. Bo Williams also got reps at quarterback going 1-for-7 for seven yards.
In the rushing game, Kanoda Lewis led the way with three carries for 19 yards. Other rushers were Latarrus Carruth with four carries for 13 yards and Williams with a carry for six yards.
Top receivers were Atari Bobo with five catches for 23 yards and Martez Clark with a catch for 10 yards.
On the defensive side of the ball there was Pride with three tackles, a tackle for a loss and a sack. Terry Bishop had three tackles and a tackle for a loss; Dean, three tackles, a pass deflection and a pass breakup; Jaqualian Gillespie, two tackles and a fumble recovery; Quin Bradford, two tackles; Caleb Grayer, one tackle, one pass breakup; and Alexander Jordan, one tackle.
West Point 14, South Panola 0
The last game of the day for the Tigers was against West Point and they fell 14-0.
It was the same story for the Tigers as the game before as they were not being able to move the ball offensively but the defense played well. On the first drive the Tigers forced a fourth down and got the ball back for the offense with a forced fumble from Dean.
Both teams stalled for the rest of the quarter. The Tigers ended the quarter with another turnover on a fumble and Bradford recovered the ball. In the second quarter the Tigers gave up two touchdowns on long drives.
In the passing game Draper went 1-for-5 for five yards. In the rushing game Lewis had four carries for eight yards and Carruth had three carries for eight yards. Other rushers include Morris House, one carry for five yards; and Bradford, one carry for two yards.
House also had a catch for five yards.
On defense Grayer had two tackles; Gillespie, two tackles; Bradford, two tackles and a fumble recovery; Bishop, Dean, Jordan and Demetri Wright had one tackle each.
SP JV 24, Meridian 0
The junior varsity played the first game against Meridian and won 24-0.
The Tigers scored on their first drive on good runs by Nate Harris and Teo Collins. Collins topped off the drive with a two-yard run for a 6-0 lead.
After the defense got the ball back, South Panola scored on an Anterio Draper 44-yard bomb to fellow ninth grader Cameron Wright for the 12-0 lead. The drive was aided by two completed passes from Draper.
The Tiger offense stalled but the defensive scored the next three scores on interception returns for touchdowns on for 56-, 47- and 46-yard returns for the 24-0 score.
Draper finished 3-for-6 for 64 yards and a touchdown. In the rushing game, Harris had four carries for 27 yards; Collins, five carries for 38 yards and a touchdown.
Wright had a catch for 44 yards and touchdown.
South Panola will open the season Thursday, August 16, as they welcome Clinton at 7 p.m.