Gators give Lacey his first win as head coach

Published 12:22 am Saturday, September 2, 2023

If Vicksburg High had questions after its season opener, playing Forest Hill always seems to provide the answer key.

DeCorey Knight and Malik Montgomery scored two touchdowns each, and Tyler Henderson caught a touchdown pass as Vicksburg routed Forest Hill 33-6 on Friday for its first win of the season.

Knight carried the ball nine times for 142 yards and one touchdown, and caught four passes for 98 yards and a TD. Henderson had four receptions for 132 yards and a touchdown.

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Montgomery finished with 43 rushing yards and two TDs. Quarterback Ronnie Alexander was 9-of-13 for 250 yards and two touchdowns, and ran for 35 yards as well.

“They played hard,” Vicksburg head coach Christopher Lacey said. “They played their butts off, but we still made too many mistakes. I’m satisfied with the ‘W’ but not satisfied with how we got there.”

The victory was the first for Lacey as Vicksburg’s head coach. He’d spent three years as the defensive coordinator and several more in other roles before that, before ascending to the top job this season.

“It feels good to get a win. Shout out to the kids for helping me get it,” Lacey said.

Vicksburg (1-1) has only lost once in 18 all-time meetings with Forest Hill (0-2), and has outscored them 133-12 in three games since 2021. Forest Hill’s only victory against the Gators was in 1994.

Playing a struggling team might not have been the best test of the Gators’ skill, but did help them straighten out a few bumps after losing 25-0 to Holmes County Central in the Red Carpet Bowl the previous week.

The defense stopped two drives inside the 5-yard line, while the offense snapped a 10-quarter scoreless streak that dated back to last season. The Gators led 27-0 at halftime.

“It was a balanced attack and looked better than it did last week. (Offensive coordinator) Andre Bennett did a great job calling the game,” Lacey said. “They did what they’re supposed to do. We always had the opportunity to put points on the board and didn’t finish drives, and tonight we did a good job finishing them.”

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.

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