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Co-Lin Wolfpack rallies past Hinds in ovetime

WESSON – Wolfpack quarterback Cedric Johnson found wide receiverDamoyn Carroll with a 22-yard touchdown pass on Co-Lin’s third playof overtime. The scoring strike gave the Copiah-Lincoln CommunityCollege Wolves a thrilling, come-from-behind 34-28 win over theHinds Community College Eagles in athriller Saturday night, atStone Stadium.

The Wolves trailed 21-0 early in the second quarter, beforemaking their comeback.

Co-Lin improves to 4-2 overall and 3-1 in the South Division.Hinds drops to 2-4 and 0-3. The Wolves host East Central forhomecoming Saturday, with the kickoff set for 5 p.m.

“We had a couple of guys that stepped it up tonight,” saidCo-Lin head coach Glen Davis. “We never gave up. We kept fightingto the end.”

It appeared that Hinds was prepared to blow this game wide-openin the first 17 minutes of the game.

The Eagles took the opening kickoff, marched 79 yards in 10plays. They used nearly 6 minutes off the clock, when sophomorequarterback Omar Love called his own number on a 1-yard scoringplunge. Jess Shelby tacked on the first-of-4 PAT kicks for a 7-0lead.

Love used his arm on Hinds’ second score, finding 6-foot-5 splitend Landay Talley with a 66-yard scoring striking. The Eaglescarried a 14-0 lead into the second frame. Love tossed his secondtouchdown pass of the night 1-minute, 36 seconds into the secondperiod. He found Lee McClendon with a 31-yard scoring strike and a21-0 Hinds advantage.

That is when the Wolfpack began their comeback. Johnson, a5-foot-10, 166-pound sophomore from Americus, Ga., raced aroundright end for a 5-yard scoring jaunt. Nick Gunter’s extra point trywas successful, as Co-Lin cut the deficit to a pair of touchdowns,21-7 at the intermission break.

“I challenged Cedric at halftime,” Coach Davis said. “I told himthat we were going to ride his shirt-tail.”

After several possession changes and a Hinds fumble, that wasrecovered by Jasper O’Quinn, Johnson went to work. He capped off an8-play, 58-yard drive with a 13-yard touchdown run and 8:44 left inthe third. The Wolves trailed 21-14.

Hinds would take advantage of a Co-Lin fumble, as Love scored ona 5-yard run with 5:06 to go in the third period. Hinds hadgarnered a 28-14 lead that would stand into the final stanza.

On Co-Lin’s first possession of the fourth quarter, Johnsonscored his second rushing touchdown with 11 minutes, 30 secondsleft in the game. Gunter’s kick was good and the deficit was backto a touchdown, 28-21. Key play in the march was a 33-yard passfrom Thomas Hinton to Anthony Chambliss. Hinton stepped undercenter for 2 plays, as Johnson was briefly injured. Johnson wouldlater return.

After the Co-Lin defense forced Hinds into their third turnoverat the Hinds 5, the Wolves took 1 play to register a 28-28 deadlockwith 1:21 left in regulation. Thomasville, Al. native Aaron Johnsscored on a 5-yard plunge. Johns led the Wolfpack ground game with96 yards on 18 rushes.

Hinds was content to run out the clock and head forovertime.

In the extra session, Co-Lin won the toss; going on defensefirst. Hinds, on its first play from the Co-Lin 25, fumbled theball. Blake Spiers, a 6-foot-2 220-pound sophomore linebacker fromBrandon, recovered the muff.

In the midst of a Co-Lin offsides penalty, it took 3 plays forJohnson to find Carroll in the end zone for the game winner.

“We just kept on fighting and believing in ourselves,” Daviscommented. “Cedric is a good player.”

Hinds head coach J. Mike Smith declined comment following thegame. A Co-Lin alumnus, Smith will be inducted into the school’sSports Hall of Fame Saturday morning, during homecomingfestivities.