Port Gibson flying high after strong start|Area prep football capsules

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 11, 2009

From staff reports

Port Gibson is off to its best start in five years after beating Jefferson County 24-12 last week and moving to 2-1. The Blue Waves will have a good shot at win No. 3 when they travel across the river to battle Madison Parish tonight in Tallulah.

Port Gibson has not won three games in a season — or total — since 2004, when it last reached the playoffs. From 2005-2008 it went 3-36, just one less victory than the program had coaches in the same span.

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First-year Port Gibson coach Lynn Lang said his team has bought into a positive belief system.

“It starts with our ninth and 10th graders. We have nearly 60 players who are participating in our program now and the bulk of them are in those two grades. They want to be a part of something and they see that we have a chance to win,” Lang said. “Even though we’ve had some success, I’m still working them hard. These guys now expect to do well.”

Running back Rudy Wilson has keyed the Waves’ attack by averaging nearly 90 yards a game on the ground. In the win over Jefferson County, Wilson ran for 84 yards and two touchdowns.

Madison Parish (0-1) had a terrible opening game, losing to Wossman 64-0 last week. Wossman was the only team the Jaguars, under third-year coach Toriano Wells, beat last year. Madison is led by standout tackle Sebastian Page.

Humphreys at SIA

Sharkey-Issaquena won its second game of the season last week by rolling over Clinton Christian 50-7. This marks the first time in three years that SIA (2-1) has won more than one game in a season. The visiting Rebels (1-2) will represent the district opener for the Confederates.

South Delta at Ruleville Central

The Bulldogs (2-1) picked up a 22-14 road win last week at North Panola and now seek a third win with a victory at Ruleville Central (1-2).

Quarterback Jeremy Barnes leads the Bulldogs offense on 15-of-27 passing for 115 yards and 246 yards rushing and two TDs. Wide receiver Brandon Smith is tied for the area lead with 11 catches for 81 yards. Linebacker Jamichael Myles is second in the area in tackles with 34 and corner Derrick Hoye has two interceptions.

Raymond at Hinds AHS

After a couple of shaky outings, Hinds AHS finally seemed like a contender last week.

The War Dawgs had one turnover and got another 200-yard rushing night from tailback Darius Newton in a 26-7 win over Crystal Springs. Hinds had turned it over six times in its first two games, all on fumbles.

Newton has rushed for 556 yards in two full games, going over 200 yards each time. He was injured early in a 15-13 win over Port Gibson and did not return.

“We’re starting to gel together. It just took a little bit of time,” Hinds coach Michael Fields said. “That’s part of the process. Working on fundamentals, technique, and hopefully it comes together.”

Bowling Green at Central Hinds

Central Hinds finally yielded a point — 55 of them, in fact — in last week’s loss to Lamar, but its offense continued to roll. The Cougars scored 28 points against fifth-ranked Lamar and are averaging nearly 35 points per game. Last season, Central Hinds only scored more than 28 points twice, and more than 30 once.

Tallulah Academy at Huntington

Since winning its opener, Tallulah Academy has lost two in a row and had a serious problem exposed. In their last two games, the Trojans have fumbled seven times — losing five — and turned it over eight times. The total includes three second-half turnovers that led to three TDs in last week’s 18-12 loss to Glenbrook.

“That’ll kill you,” Tallulah coach John Weaver said. “And what it comes down to is attention to detail. You get down there and you’ve got to punch it into the end zone.”

The Trojans need to solve their turnover woes in a hurry. They face Huntington in a key District 6-A game tonight in Ferriday, La. It’s one of only three district games on the schedule, and to make the playoffs Tallulah will have to win two of those.

“I’d like to win all three,” Weaver said with a laugh. “That leaves no doubt. This one is the driver. You win this one and you’re 1-0, Trinity is 1-0 and you’re up in the top two. I don’t want the season to come down to two games. It puts you in the driver’s seat.”