Central spoils Homecoming for Scotlandville, 30-27
Homecoming is usually for pomp, circumstance and pushovers. Homecoming opponents are supposed to be sacrificial lambs served up before a weekend of dances and recalled memories of glory past.
Central High didn’t get that memo. They rode into Scotlandville undefeated and rode out the same way, handing the Hornets their second consecutive defeat, 30-27.
The Hornets opened the game taking a quick 7-0 lead after a 6-play, 67 yard drive. Zane Teasett threw it over the outstretched arms of a Wildcat defender and into the hands of Jessie Craig for a 29-yard touchdown.
Central responded in a big way on their opening drive. The Wildcats struck from 71 yards out as Samuel Kenerson rolled to his left and threw a strike downfield that tied the score at 7.
After pinning the Hornets deep in their own territory, Central forced a short punt that allowed the Wildcats to take over at the Scotlandville 23 yard line.
Four plays later, Jonathan Swift II took it in from 15 yards outs to make it 14-7.
Scotlandville was able to even the score late in the first quarter as Marlon Gunn took a handoff over the right side, made it to the sideline and took off for a 68-yard tying score.
In the second quarter, the Hornets retook the lead with a seven play, 59 yard drive. They gained 47 of those yards on the ground, with Chance Williams punching it in from two yards out. The extra point was no good, leaving the score at 21-20.
It looked like Scotlandville would head into the locker room with the lead, but Central was able to put together a drive with 2:39 to play in the half. Aided by a delay of game penalty on the Hornets, the Wildcats were able to extend the drive.
Given an extra life, Central took advantage. With just six seconds to go in the half, Kenerson dropped back and threw it towards the end zone, where Josiah Rankins reached through a sea of hands and came down with the tying score. The extra point made it 21-20 Wildcats at the break.
The second half became more of a defensive struggle as the coaches made their adjustments.
Scotlandville struck first in the third quarter, utilizing the dual threat ability of Swift II. Lined up in the backfield, he took a handoff and with a beautiful fake to set it up, threw a 50-yard pass to Juan Banks to set the Wildcats up with first and goal from the three yard line.
On the next play Swift ran it in on a sweep to the right. A missed extra point gave Central a 27-20 advantage.
But just as they were driving to pick up another score, Central made a big mistake and Scotlandville made an even bigger play.
Swift had the ball in his hands once again, but defensive lineman Bryce Cage stripped him of the football and then took off 97 yards in the other direction for the touchdown. The extra point tied the score at 27 as the game moved into the fourth quarter.
With the score tied late, Central took the lead after a 30 yard run by Isaiah Rankins put the Wildcats inside the five. They would have to settle for a 25 yard Tyler Melton field goal and a 30-27 advantage.
With the clock winding down, Scotlandville gave itself one final opportunity after an interception gave them the ball 80 yards from the end zone with 90 seconds to play.
The Hornets were able to get to midfield but mismanaged their timeouts and couldn’t get out of bounds to stop the clock as time ran out.
Central (7-0, 2-0) moves on to face Walker next week at home, while Scotlandville (5-2, 0-2) will try break its losing streak on the road at Zachary.
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Sports 1280am host/CCS reporter
David Grubb has more than a decade of experience in the sports industry. He began his career with KLAX-TV in Alexandria, La. and followed that up with a stint as an reporter and anchor with WGGB-TV in Springfield, Mass. After spending a few years away from the industry, David worked as sports information director for Southern University at New Orleans…