South Pike dominates Vikes, 31-0|[9/17/05]

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 17, 2005

MAGNOLIA – South Pike quarterback Kelsey Island threw two touchdowns to lead the top-ranked team in Class 3A to an eye-opening 31-0 victory over Warren Central on Friday night.

Island threw TD passes of 33 and 35 yards to highlight a 171-yard passing performance against a Viking defense that was missing reigning Vicksburg Post Defensive Player of the Year Chico Hunter. Hunter injured his knee in a win over Grenada last week and his status for next week’s game against Meridian is in question.

“We were working well as a unit and when we do that, it’s hard to stop us,” said Island, who finished 11-of-16 passing for 171 yards.

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Warren Central (2-1) was stymied by a tough South Pike defense that did not allow the Vikings past the Eagles’ 24-yard line.

“We could never sustain a drive. A lot of the problems we caused,” WC coach Curtis Brewer said. “We can’t let our defense stay out there because South Pike has too many skilled folks.”

South Pike extended a 6-0 lead when James Martin returned a WC fumble 75 yards for a touchdown to key a 12-point second quarter. South Pike led 18-0 at the half.

“That bunch has been together for the last two years and they can get after it when they want to,” South Pike coach Randall Huffman said of his defense. WC finished with 251 yards total, including 117 rushing. Most of that came late in the game, however.

The Eagles put the game out of reach with two sustained drives in the second half. Island hit Chris Abron on a 35-yard TD pass while Detroit Rogers had an 8-yard run to cap the scoring.

The Vikings were hurt by four turnovers, but none were bigger than Martin’s fumble return that came after DeWayne Pittman crushed WC running back Raymond Hunter in the backfield, causing the fumble.

Martin later stopped a WC drive right before the half with a 9-yard sack of Viking quarterback Ryan Williams.

South Pike (3-0) needed just two plays to get in the end zone. Island got the score on a 33-yard TD pass to Lionel Richard. The Eagles missed all three of their PAT attempts in the first half, keeping the score at 18-0.

WC opened the second half with its best drive of the night, going 40 yards following three Williams completions. But a holding penalty took the wind out of the drive and the Vikings turned the ball over on downs.

Two other promising Viking drives ended on Williams’ interceptions inside South Pike’s 20-yard line. Williams finished 11-of-25 passing for 134 yards and two interceptions.