Indians get by Jefferson to earn the Region 7-3A title; host Crystal Springs on Friday
The second-ranked Hazlehurst Indians took their time in securing the Region 7-3A title on Friday night, winning 30-17 at Jefferson County. Nonetheless, the Indians, 9-0, 4-0, have secured the top seed in the division and have one more obstacle in the regular season before beginning post-season play.
Jefferson County jumped to a 11-0 halftime lead on Friday night, successfully kicking in a 3 point field goal in the first quarter, then adding a TD and a 2 point conversion in the second.
Whatever head coach Randal Montgomery told his team at the break worked because the Indians returned to the field a different team in the third period. By the end of three, the score stood at Hazlehurst 30, Jefferson County 11.
Running back Aaron Larry scored first for Hazlehurst on a one-yard plunged to open the second half. Copiah County Super 7 running back Demetrius Cain added the 2 point conversion to cut the lead to 11-8.
A few plays later, Cain picked off an errant throw by the Jefferson quarterback and sprinted 52 yards ‘to the house’ for a score. Cain also added his second 2 point PAT to put the Indians ahead for good at 17-11.
Hazlehurst’s next possession concluded with a long-range scoring connection from quarterback Kenneth Coleman to Cain for 33 yards. This time, D’Alex Rockingham added the 2 point conversion, extending his team’s lead to 24-11.
One final insurance score in the quarter came on another long pass play. Coleman found Rockingham streaking down the field for a 45 yard completion and touchdown. The extra point attempt failed, and Hazlehurst had stunned the hosts 30-11 at the end of three.
Jefferson added a late TD to narrow the gap to the final of 30-17.
Cain finished with 119 rushing yards on 11 attempts and caught the one TD pass for 33 yards. He accounted for 20 of the Indians’ 30 points. On defense he intercepted 2 passes and collected 9 tackles.
Larry added 76 yards rushing. Coleman finished 5-of-17 for 129 yards passing with 2 TD’s.
Dedric Reese caught 3 balls for 51 yards.
Defensive tackle Jonkill Skipper had 8 stops, including one sack.
Montgomery and his staff can now pin their ears back and get ready for the season finale against Crystal Springs here on Friday night. The Tigers, 4-6, haven’t won since September 14 against Canton and are 0-4 in Region 7-3A play. Fans are encouraged to arrive at McDaniel Stadium early, as a capacity crowd is expected. Senior players, cheerleaders and band members will be honored before the game. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.