Tigers Offense Stagnant in Loss to Pearl River
With 2:38 remaining on the game clock, and despite gaining less than 130 yards of total offense during the previous 57:62 of play, Coahoma Community College took possession of the ball with a chance to put together one last drive and tie the game against Pearl River.
Trailing 15-7, and beginning the drive from his own 11-yard-line, Tigers quarterback Quaintavous Peterson dropped back in the pocket, rolled to his right to escape pressure, and floated an errant pass that found the hands of a Wildcats defensive back. It was the second interception of the night for the CCC signal caller, and the third turnover by the Tigers of the night.
Pearl River (2-2) would ice the game four plays later with a 3-yard touchdown run by QB Shaun White on fourth down to chisel out the final 21-7 win.
It was the best opportunity this season for Coahoma (0-4, 0-1 in the MACJC North) to earn their first win. Pearl River was sloppy offensively, the Wildcats turned the ball over four times, but the CCC offensive just never made it out of first gear. Defensively the Tigers played well enough to pickup the victory, but the offense just couldn’t reciprocate.
“We played about as well as we can play tonight defensively and I was very proud of that effort,” said Coahoma Head Coach Freeman Horton. “They played hard all night. They were put into some tough situations and were backed up early in the game but they held (PRCC). I was very proud of the way that we played defensively.”
The Tigers’ only score of the night came on a bizarre turn of events late in the third quarter. In the middle of a 25-yard, six-play drive that saw Pearl River about to cross midfield, CCC defensive end Devin Williams put a monster hit on the Wildcats quarterback causing him to cough up the ball. CCC’s Donnell Hixson pounced on it bringing the Tigers offense onto the field.
On the next play, Coahoma running back Tiberas Lampkin fumbled the ball giving it right back to Pearl River. However, on the Wildcats next play, the QB White was hit from his blindside and fumbled the ball and the Tigers re-gained possessing after James Harmon covered the loose ball.
Following the combined three, consecutive turnovers, the Tigers put together their only sustainable drive of the night (six plays, 36 yards) that ended with Peterson throwing his best pass of the night hitting his wide receiver Damico Ewing on the fade right who did a great job of staying in bounds and making the catch.
Of the four turnovers made by Pearl River, this was the only one the Tigers were able to capitalize on. The Wildcats also fumbled the opening kickoff of the second half, and in the closing seconds of the first half, CCC safety Dalvin Gates came up with an interception in the end zone to stop the PRCC scoring drive.
“We had opportunities tonight, there’s no doubt about it,” Horton said. “We just couldn’t get anything going offensively. If we could have put together anything tonight on the offensive side of the ball, it would have been a win for us.”
Coahoma now has a little lag time to heal before they return to the practice field on Monday to begin preparing to face No. 5 East Mississippi Community College on the road next Saturday. The Lions boast the National Junior College Athletics Association’s (NJCAA) top scoring offense and defense. EMCC defeated Pearl River in its season-opener 49-6.
The Lions improved to 4-0, 1-0 with its MACJC Northern Division win over Mississippi Delta Community College Thursday night, 70-0. EMCC has outscored their first four opponents 247-6. The Tigers have all week to prepare.
“We’re just going to get back to work on Monday and try and get better, that’s all we can do,” said Horton. “We’ve got to get better blocking from our offensive line, more consistent play for our quarterbacks and we’ve got to make better decisions.”
Kickoff next Saturday will be at 2 p.m., at Sullivan-Windham Field in Scooba, MS.
Scoring by Quarters
1st Qtr — 2:53, PRCC Shaun White 15-yard pass to Shaun Jones, kick missed, 6-0
2nd Qtr — 9:27, PRCC White 1-yard run, kick missed, 12-0
3rd Qtr — 3:48, CCC Quaintavous Peterson 6-yard pass to Damico Ewing, Spears kick good, 12-7
4th Qtr — 7:23, PRCC Mark More 24-yard field goal, 15-7
4th Qtr — 0:55, PRCC White 3-yard run, kick missed, 21-7