Four Tallulah players, PCA’s Llopis selected to All-MAIS team

Published 2:14 pm Saturday, December 11, 2021

Success on the gridiron translated into postseason recognition for a handful of players from Porter’s Chapel Academy and Tallulah Academy.

PCA kicker Daniel Llopis and four Tallulah players — quarterback Dee Morgan, offensive lineman Kody Vickery, running back Paul Michael Machen and defensive back Johnson Zheng — were selected to the All-MAIS Class 2A team, the Mid-South Association of Independent Schools announced.

Llopis helped PCA control field position all season long, with 17 touchbacks on kickoffs and an average of 42 yards per punt. He also made all of his PAT attempts.

Morgan, Machen and Vickery, meanwhile, were the driving forces of a Tallulah offense that averaged 44.6 points per game.

Morgan passed for 1,070 yards and 15 touchdowns, and ran for 673 yards and 16 TDs. The junior also played defensive back and finished with 44 tackles and two interceptions, including a pick-six against Newton Academy.
Machen had seven 100-yard rushing games in 10 starts, and totaled 1,543 yards and 17 touchdowns. He also caught 12 passes for 319 yards and five touchdowns.

Zheng finished the season with 45 tackles and two interceptions. He had a 65-yard interception return touchdown and eight tackles in a win over Class 2A finalist Manchester Academy in September.

A number of Vicksburg-area players were also selected to the All-MAIS Class 1A team.

Sharkey-Issaquena Academy’s Dusty Hatcher and Chris Gibson made it as a defensive lineman and all-purpose player, respectively.

Class 1A finalist Briarfield Academy had six players chosen — offensive linemen Nick Hale and Noah Payne, running back RaMarion Johnson, wide receiver Landon Webb, linebacker Noah Womack and defensive end Carter Coullard.

Coullard was selected as the Class 1A Defensive Player of the Year. He finished the season with 78 total tackles, including 22 tackles for loss, eight sacks and one interception. He forced two fumbles and recovered three to lead the Rebels to their third consecutive appearance in the Class 1A championship game.

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 sports reporters in the paper's 137-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.

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