Northeast remains unbeaten after win over Southwest
Northeast Mississippi Community College’s football team stayed perfect on the year in front of another packed Tiger Stadium on Thursday, September 8.
Northeast (2-0, 0-0) used a stout defensive effort and a three-touchdown performance from Parks Frazier (Corinth) in knocking off Southwest 32-9 in Booneville.
Northeast’s defense held the high-powered Southwest offense to just 86 yards of total offense and contained Bear quarterback Vintavious Cooper limiting the sophomore signal caller to just 25 yards on the ground and a 3-of-14 performance through the air for nine yards.
Previously, Cooper had been able lead the Bear offense to 390 yards – 376 on the ground – in a 24-21 double overtime win against Holmes in the season opener.
Northeast’s defense held Southwest to just 70 yards rushing on 24 attempts and thwarted the Bear air attack, which finished 4-of-16 for 16 yards and three interceptions.
Northeast’s defense kept a tight lid on Southwest and did not allow the Bears to complete a pass until just over 12 minutes left in the game when Cooper hit Donnell Dunigan on a 6-yard pass with 12:11 left in the fourth quarter.
Frazier came out hot for the Tigers quickly passing the 100-yard passing plateau on a 4-of-5 showing including a 63-yard pass to Markie Dukes (Oxford) that set up the Tigers first score.
Frazier found Dukes on a slant route with 11:49 left in the first quarter and staked the host to a 6-0 advantage.
Northeast threatened again driving to the Bear 5 before Brennan Dunklin stepped in front of a Frazier pass and rumbled 101 yards for the tying score for Southwest with 4:42 left in the quarter.
Not to be outdone, Frazier rallied the troops and capped the drive as the quarter ended hitting Tres Houston (Atlanta, Ga.) on a 10-yard touchdown strike.
Over the next two frames, the game turned into a defensive struggle as both teams thwarted scoring opportunities.
Northeast was able to add to its 13-6 lead with a pair of Taylor Earhart (Olive Branch) field goals in the second and third quarters.
Earhart connected on a 41-yard field goal with 5:10 left in the first half and staked the Tigers to a 19-6 advantage with his 31-yard effort with 11:32 left in the third.
Northeast finally broke from the special teams scoring with an 11-play drive that ground almost seven minutes off the clock in the third quarter.
After Deion Belue (Tuscumbia, Ala.) gave the host good field position with a 30-yard punt return, the Tigers took the next 6:42 to drive 36 yards before Frazier found Michael Poole (Ripley) on a 3-yard screen for his third touchdown pass of the night.
However, the drive tried to stall out at the Bear 28 before Frazier extended it by finding Houston on a 15-yard pass to the Bear 13 on fourth-and two.
A Tiger turnover gave Southwest its final score of the night but the Northeast defense kept the Bears of the end zone.
Following a Tiger fumble, Southwest picked up good field position at the Tiger 28 but could not break through the defense and had to settle for a 31-yard Jake Saltalamacchia field goal with 8:03 left in the game.
Courtney Sutton, who had a fumble return for a score in the season opener against East Central, put the game on ice for the Tigers on the Bears next possession. The sophomore from Southaven hauled in a tipped shovel pass and rumbled his way to the Bear 8 yard-line.
Sutton’s interception allowed Jamarcus Goodloe (Leighton, Ala.) to bull his way in from three yards out with 4:27 left in the game giving the Tigers a 32-9 advantage.
Northeast will look to keep its perfect record intact next Thursday, September 15 as the Tigers open up North Division play in Moorhead against Mississippi Delta (0-2, 0-0). Kickoff is set for 6:30 p.m.
Fans can listen to all the action beginning at 6:20 p.m. by logging onto http://www.teamline.cc/teampage?teamcode=1452, then clicking on football.
Fans can also listen to the live play-by-play from any telephone for $5 per game. To access games via any telephone, dial 1-216-502-3200. Enter teamcode 1452 when prompted. Long distance charges may apply depending on long distance plan or provider.
About Chris Elkins
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