Homecoming Panthers host Terry

Published 5:00 am Friday, October 12, 2001

Homecoming is a special event at Brookhaven High School and itmainly serves as a distraction for the football team. The Panthersplan to present the large homecoming crowd with a Friday nightvictory on King Field when they host the Terry Bulldawgs for aRegion 6-4A game. Kickoff is 7:30.

Brookhaven (4-2, 2-1) still is in the thick of the region race,despite last week’s loss at McComb. South Pike (5-1, 2-0) leads theregion race and hosts Raymond (3-3, 0-2) for homecoming tomorrownight. McComb (3-3, 2-1) hosts Port Gibson (3-2, 1-2) in a regiontest and Lawrence County (5-1, 2-1) hosts Amite County in anon-region test.

Terry, under the direction of 10th year head coach David Virgil,is recovering from a 30-0 loss to South Pike.

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Asked about his team’s season, Virgil said, “We are doing okay.”The majority of Terry’s starters are seniors.

Robert Fortson (5-8, 165, sr.) leads the Bulldawgs in rushingwith 537 yards.

Quarterbacking Terry is Toronto Knight (5-9, 175, sr.),converted from tailback. Knight is used mainly as a runner.

Tailback Keoni Gray (5-7, 155, sr.,) and fullback E.J. Brady(5-10, 210, sr.) also carry the mail for Terry.

“Brookhaven’s quarterback looks good and their tailback, number28, also looks very good,” said Virgil. He was referring toquarterback Billy Williams and tailback Cornelius Allen.

“Hopefully we can get some injured folks healthy by Friday,”said Virgil. His quarterback was injured in the South Pikegame.

On defense, linebacker Matthew Bailey (6-1, 205, sr.) leads theBulldawgs. Jeffrey Archie (6-0, 210, sr.) plays noseguard for theBulldawgs.

Brookhaven head coach Andrew Hickman said he and his staff havebeen researching the Bulldawgs on film and by telephone this week.”Terry is big and they have good size. They have a couple of guyswho can run pretty good. I heard their quarterback got hurt in theSouth Pike game.

“They run a lot of power stuff,” Hickman continued. “They try toestablish a running game. They have a couple of play-action passesoff of that”

Brookhaven must rebound from a disappointing 28-21 loss atMcComb. The Panthers were on McComb’s 6-yard line when timeexpired. Every region game is crucial to their playoff hopes.

“We realize we have to win this game,” said Hickman. “If we winthis game we will be in the playoffs. We want to finish higher andplay at home in the first round.

The top two teams in each region will have the advantage ofhosting a first round playoff game. The third and fourth placeteams will travel in the opening round.

Hickman said tight end Philip Tobias was slowed by an ankleinjury. “Everybody else should be all right”

Brookhaven lost 3 fumbles and had 1 pass intercepted in theMcComb game. The first-fumble came on the opening kickoff and theTigers only needed 2 plays to score from 30 yards out.

Hickman said the Panthers must avoid mistakes similar to themiscues at McComb. “We fumbled that opening kickoff and boom; itwas 8-0.”

According to Hickman, Brookhaven’s young defensive unit issteadily improving. “Our defense is getting better and better eachweek. We only gave up two long runs against McComb.”

The Panthers were led by linebacker Belma Cager who had 6 solostops and 4 assists. Linebacker Brian Mitchell was 5-5 and earnedDefensive Player of the Week honors. Linebacker Josh Townsend had 5tackles and 4 assists.

Offensively, the Panthers were led by Williams who rushed 14times for 158 yards and 1 TD. He had a 74-yard gain off an optionrun. He also completed 8 of 25 passes for 104 yards.

Allen rushed 12 times for 35 yards and 2 touchdowns as thePanthers nearly overcame a 21-6 deficit. He caught a 21-yard TDpass from Williams.

Panther Paws: Last year Brookhaven trounced Terry 48-7, spoilingTerry’s homecoming. Panther wingback Tarik Williams rushed 4 timesfor 102 yards and a TD while quarterback Fred Perkins rushed for 81yards and threw his only TD pass of the season, it going 41 yardsto Seth Flynn.