• 61°

Hornets host Wesson Cobras

Wesson’s Cobras and Loyd Star’s Hornets finished 1-2 in theRegion 6-2A race. Six weeks after their last meeting, the twoarchrivals clash again Friday night, this time in the quarterfinalsof the Class 2A state playoffs. Kickoff is 7:30 on Loyd Star’sWilliam E. “Sambo” Smith Field.

In the other South 2A game, Gulfport St. John (11-1) invadesTaylorsville (9-3). In North 2A, East Webster (7-4) is at Ackerman(11-1) and Shelby Broad Street (11-1) is at Ruleville Central(11-0).

Loyd Star (9-2) and Wesson (11-1) have both played well in thestate playoffs. In the opening round, Loyd Star whipped South Leake40-0 and Wesson walloped Kemper County 49-8. Last Friday night theHornets beat Newton 20-6 on the road and the Cobras beat ScottCentral 20-7 at Wesson.

Loyd Star head coach Anthony Hart said the game was important.”To say it’s a big game is kind of insufficient. It doesn’t haveanything to do with rivalry but more of what you are playingfor.”

The victor plays the winner of the St. John-Taylorsville gameNov. 30, for the South State championship.

“Wesson is a good team, good in all phases of the game,” saidHart. “They don’t have any weaknesses.”

Hart said Wesson is the strongest team his squad has faced thisseason. The Cobras rallied for a 28-9 victory over Loyd Star onOct. 12, at Loyd Star. “We made the mistakes the first time andthey made us pay for it.

“We have a lot of similarities,” Hart pointed out. “We bothprotect the ball well on offense and play good defense. We are notfancy on offense.

“Wesson runs a lot of misdirection and counter plays,” Hartadded. “They have a lot of speed.”

In Wesson’s backfield, the Cobras have a speedy and powerful 1-2punch in Billy Ray Miller and Marcus Corley. Miller is a leader ondefense at middle linebacker. Against Scott Central, Ryan Williamsand Miller each had 13 tackles on defense. Charles Powell and MattDyess each had 8 tackles.

Loyd Star counts heavily on senior tailback Derreck Johnson. Hehas rushed for over 1,600 yards and scored 24 touchdowns.

Fullback Adam Speeg scored 2 TDs in the win over Newton. Linebacker Matthew Delaughter led Loyd Star’s defense with 16 tacklesand a fumble recovery. Linebacker Cody Covington had 13 tackles and2 fumble recoveries. Tackle Beau Morrison made 11 stops.