Turnovers prove costly for PCA

Published 3:38 am Saturday, August 25, 2018

Porter’s Chapel Academy might have found a running back and a bit of an offensive identity Friday night. It’s still searching for its first win.

Tyler Washington rushed for 166 yards and two touchdowns for the Eagles, but they couldn’t overcome five turnovers and lost 46-14 to Riverfield Academy.

Riverfield (1-1, 1-0 District 3-AAA) scored two touchdowns late in the second quarter off of PCA turnovers to take a 33-7 lead at halftime and firm control of the game.

Email newsletter signup

Sign up for The Vicksburg Post's free newsletters

Check which newsletters you would like to receive
  • Vicksburg News: Sent daily at 5 am
  • Vicksburg Sports: Sent daily at 10 am
  • Vicksburg Living: Sent on 15th of each month

“Offensively, after the second drive of the game, they didn’t stop us. We stopped ourselves,” PCA coach Blake Purvis said. “Five turnovers. Short fields. We have got to take care of the football. We only punted one time tonight. Defensively, we did not play well on the second level. We weren’t getting our run fits the way we should have been.”

McKinley Skipper led PCA’s defense with 12 tackles. Josh Hunt and Cole Pittman had 10 each, and Ethan Phillipson had eight. The turnovers, however, were PCA’s undoing.

Washington, a freshman, fumbled twice and junior quarterback Luke Yocum threw three interceptions. Both players were making just their second varsity start. Yocum was 8-of-17 passing for 39 yards.

“When you look at our turnovers, it was guys who just haven’t had very many reps at their positions,” Purvis said, adding that he wasn’t brushing off his team’s ball security issues. The Eagles have now committed eight turnovers in two games. “I felt like the things we needed to fix from last week, we fixed. Our offensive line played better and gave us a chance to move the ball. When you get beat 46-14 and only punt once, something is awry. We definitely have to work on our ball security.”

PCA (0-2, 0-1) will get a chance to break into the win column next week and pick up a key District 3-AAA victory when it goes on the road to Hillcrest Christian in Jackson. Hillcrest has been outscored 90-0 in its first two games and is riding a 15-game losing streak that dates back to 2016.

The loss to Riverfield didn’t cripple the Eagles’ district championship hopes, Purvis said, but also made it so they can’t afford to drop a winnable one the next time out.

“You hate to drop it. You don’t like losing those district games,” Purvis said. “It’s not a season-ender. A one-loss team can still win our district. But it definitely puts us behind the 8-ball.”

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

email author More by Ernest