FULTON – Most seasons, finding the Corinth Warriors and Itawamba AHS Indians on the same football field would mean a game with some teeth.
It’s more like baby teeth this season, with the youth and inexperience on both squads.
The Indians’ youth was served best Friday as they ran past Corinth 33-10.
“Offensively, we were able to run the football, and were taking what they gave us on quick throws,” first-year Itawamba coach Ashley Kuhn said. “We missed a couple of big shots, but I thought we played OK.”
A majority of the Indians’ yards were not very glamorous, just hard-fought between the tackles. Earning their success in the trenches was apparent in their first possession, a 13-play drive that was capped by a 9-yard run by Charles Moore.
The young Warriors (1-4) tried to stay in the contest, utilizing one of their best weapons – kicker Jordan Parker. The senior connected on a 44-yard field goal the third play of the second quarter to cut the Itawamba lead to 6-3.
Itawamba (3-3) star quarterback Maikhail Miller was able to loosen up his arm on the next Indians possession, a 13-play drive. Five completions by Miller helped to set up his 3-yard score on a draw, giving IAHS a 12-3 halftime edge.
“I saw the effort was there tonight, but we made a lot of mistakes that helped them,” veteran Corinth coach Jimmy Mitchell said. “They didn’t need our help.”
A big help for the Indians on this night was junior Austin Shumpert. Normally a wide receiver, Shumpert moved into the slot for the first time, touching the ball five times on runs for a total of 127 yards.
His first touch of the second half was a quick-striking 79-yard run for a touchdown. Corinth tried to respond, with quarterback Lew Johnson finding Kyoshi Agnew for a 28-yard TD that pulled the Warriors within 19-10.
“That’s the first time Shumpert has played inside, and he did a really good job,” Kuhn said.
But the experience of Miller helped the Indians firmly grab control of the contest. Throwing for an efficient 109 yards, Miller notched 33 of those yards on a strike to Jimmy Ruff that bumped the Itawamba lead to 26-10.
The Indians closed out the scoring in the fourth period as Miller swept in on a 7-yard scoring run.
David Wheeler/NEMS Daily Journal