Hinds’ defense prepared for better test with Holmes

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 7, 2000

The Hinds Community College Eagles passed their first test on the road to another berth in the state championship with a 38-0 blanking of Coahoma last week.

Tonight’s game the home opener should prove more difficult.

Holmes is coming off a 26-7 win over South Division favorite Gulf Coast. Holmes quarterback Marlin Loggins tossed a pair of touchdowns.

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“This is going to be one of the toughest games of the year,” Hinds coach Gene Murphy said. “We are a young team and they are more experienced. I hope our defense can … make the difference.”

Hinds’ defense manhandled Coahoma, allowing a paltry minus-20 yards in offense, while the Eagles racked up more than 300 yards.

Vicksburg High product Thomas McKnight had a 122 yards and a pair of touchdowns and Brad Banks, making his first start at quarterback, threw a pair of TDs.

But it was the defense that stole the show. Led by a host of Division I-A signees, including former VHS standout and Mississippi State signee Jason Myers, the Hinds’ defense stymied Coahoma from the beginning.

In last year’s meeting with Holmes, the Eagles needed a last-second field goal by current Alabama placekicker Neal Thomas to a 24-21 win. That game was also played at Hinds.

Kickoff for tonight’s game at Joe Renfroe Stadium in Raymond is scheduled for 7:30.

“I think it will be a battle of who makes the big plays,” Murphy said. “They have some excellent receivers … I hope we can hang (with them).”