By Brad Locke/NEMS Daily Journal
BOONEVILLE – Corinth’s players have heard the fourth-quarter mantra from their first-year coach, Doug Jones, all offseason. On Friday night, that mantra became real.
Booneville tried to find some fourth-quarter magic for a second consecutive week, but Corinth made big plays on both sides of the ball in a 22-16 win.
“All summer long during sprints and everything he’d be saying, ‘Fourth quarter, fourth quarter,'” Corinth quarterback Brady Allen said of his coach. “And that’s what kind of team we are, we’re a fourth-quarter team. I think we can play with anybody in the fourth quarter. I think we showed that tonight.”
Booneville (2-1), which rallied from 20 points down the previous week to beat Baldwyn, erased a 10-point deficit in the second half Friday but couldn’t finish the deal.
“It crossed my mind,” Jones said of last week’s Booneville rally, “but I felt like we were scrapping the whole night even though we led most of the game.”
With the game tied 16-16, a bad Booneville punt snap set up Corinth (2-0) 22 yards from the end zone. Four plays later, Allen ran it in from 3 yards for the go-ahead score with 4 minutes, 7 seconds left in the game.
Corinth then got a big turnover when Randy Hill stripped the ball away two plays later. Booneville got it back but couldn’t rally.
The Warriors were led by Kendrick Williams, who gained 123 of his 125 rushing yards in the first half and scored on runs of 43 and 38 yards. Then Robert White took over, gaining 33 of his 56 yards after the break.
It was 16-6 at halftime.
After forcing a safety, Booneville drove 48 yards and scored on quarterback Jack Simpson’s 1-yard sneak. His two-point conversion pass to Jordan Miller tied it with 9:49 to go.
The Blue Devils outgained Corinth, 258-242, but committed three turnovers.
“You’ve got to go out and take care of your business and not rely on something like that to happen magically, whatever you want to call it,” Booneville coach Mike Mattox said. “You’ve got to play football.”
Booneville receiver Andrew Lambert had five catches for 113 yards, with a 70-yard touchdown.