By Brad Locke
MOOREVILLE – The first ever meeting between Tishomingo County and Mooreville was a ragged affair throughout, and then it turned downright nasty at the end.
Mooreville took home a 26-10 victory, but head coach Kevin Austin wasn’t feeling like a winner. The game was marred by a barrage of flags and an on-field fight between the teams in the fourth quarter.
In all, four people were ejected – two Mooreville players, a Tishomingo County player and a Tishomingo County assistant coach.
“In my seven years here, I’ve never seen anything like that, and my kids have never acted that way,” Austin said. “I wish we wouldn’t have played. I don’t know what to say about it. I’m at a loss for words.”
On a humid night that saw several players – mostly from Mooreville – cramping up, tensions got high about halfway through the fourth quarter after a Tishomingo County pass completion. The receiver and defender exchanged shoves, the Tishomingo coach got ejected, and six penalty flags littered the turf.
Moments later, it got really ugly.
Mooreville quarterback John Thomas Peugh, who rushed for 221 yards on 23 carries, scored his fourth touchdown of the night from 34 yards to essentially ice the game. On a failed extra-point try, players again got mixed up, and that’s when the brawl began.
It was short-lived, but the damage was done.
Tishomingo coach Lanny Jones said he didn’t have a clear view of what happened.
“We’ll go back and watch film and see what happened, and we’ll take care of our business, because that’s the first ever of that I’ve ever experienced as a coach,” Jones said. “I don’t condone it, and I don’t tolerate it.
“So whatever happened, we’ll make sure our guys that are responsible for starting it or being involved with it, that they get some consequences for it.”
The fight capped an already miserable night for the Braves, who committed seven turnovers, three of them in the red zone. Mooreville scored off two of those turnovers in the second quarter to take a 14-0 lead into halftime.
Peugh, a transfer from Shannon, scored on a 56-yard scamper and then a 1-yard plunge. He also had an 8-yard score in the third quarter.