SP Tigers capture 6A Region 1 title with convincing road win

Published 10:46 pm Thursday, November 2, 2023

165314The South Panola Tigers won the 6A Region 1 divisional title Thursday night at Grenada, posting a 28-7 victory over the Chargers and wrapping up the season with a perfect 5-0 region record.

The Tigers, 9-1 on the season, scored 21 unanswered points in the second half to beat Grenada, who also entered the game with an 8-1 record and a 4-0 in district play. The Tigers won the total offense battle, 320 yards to 145; the time of possession statistic 34:35 to 13:25; and the turnovers caused, 1-0.

On a chilly night in Grenada, South Panola filled the visitors bleachers to see the Tigers outplay the Chargers in all facets of the game. Head coach Brooks Oakley said the game was the team’s best this season with top effort on both sides of the ball.

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“I thought we played well in the first half, we just had some penalties that got us behind the chains,” Oakley said. “We were able to run the football and just got out of our own way in the second half.”

“Giving up seven points to that group right there is something, that’s a good football team,” Oakley said. “I wouldn’t be surprised if we do our part that we meet up with them again in the playoffs.”

The teams traded punts and turnovers on downs in the first quarter before the Tigers were able to put together an 11-play, 51-yard touchdown drive at the start of the second period. South Panola scored on a 12-yard pass from Michael Johnson to Marcus Christon.

Xavier McFadden added the PAT and the Tigers led 7-0.

The Chargers answered with an 6-play drive culminated by a 29 yard passing score and a successful PAT.

There was no more scoring in the first half and the scored was knotted 7-7 at intermission.

It was all Tigers in the second half. Mykel Allen scored on a 3-yard touchdown run with 6:10 left in the third quarter to put South Panola up 14-7. It was all the margin the Tigers would need, but the offense added two more touchdowns in the fourth quarter to seal the game and the region title.

Christon caught his second touchdown of the game on a 45 yard catch and run from Johnson midway through the final frame, and Johnson added a rushing touchdown on a 1-yard plunge with 1:45 left in the game.

Photos by Kendall Bowlin