Special to the Journal
SHANNON – Kyoshi Agnew gets plenty of praise for his play on the offensive side of the football, but the licks he delivers defensively are equally as impressive.
Agnew was a difference maker for Corinth in a 31-7 victory over Shannon on Friday. The win clinched the Division 1-4A championship for the Warriors.
“I know I gotta work hard in practice to have my body ready physically and mentally for every game,” said Agnew. “It’s my team and my defense and it’s my role to play.”
His leadership and athleticism quelled any hopes the Red Raiders (3-6, 1-3) had of a comeback. Shannon crossed into Warrior territory early in the fourth quarter after a personal foul penalty.
But the Red Raiders went no further after the senior made three stops in a row. Agnew sacked quarterback JT Loving, applied a hard tackle on second down and caught Mark Seals in the backfield for a 4-yard loss.
Corinth’s offensive line, led by senior Robert Briggs and center J.R. Burns, opened up gaps for Agnew and his fellow backs all evening. The Warriors (9-1, 4-0) compiled 333 yards of total offense with none coming by pass.
Agnew led the way with 174 and 20 carries. His 41-yard TD run put Corinth ahead 21-0 at halftime.
Kendrick Williams and Demarkus Prather both added short scores in the opening half. Williams tallied 95 yards on 12 touches.
John Michael McFall connected on a 37-yard field goal with 5:45 remaining in the third.
Just over a minute later, Agnew capped the scoring and turned a Tiberius Hurd interception into points on a touchdown scamper of 15 yards.
Second-year Corinth coach Doug Jones attributed the division title to more than just the work of he and his players.
“Everybody had a part in this championship, including a great administration, teachers, assistant coaches and the town itself,” he said. “The kids bought in to the offseason weight program and have practiced hard and fast as I like.”
Loving connected on a pass of 63 yards to Cameron Montgomery late in the contest for Shannon’s lone score.
“Things haven’t gone our way so far,” said Red Raiders coach Darryl Carter, “but we’re going to finish what we started whether good or bad.”