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Panthers invade Forest Hill

Brookhaven travels to south Jackson Friday to play the ForestHill Rebels in a must-win situation for both teams. Kickoff is 7p.m. for the Region 6-4A test.

The Rebels (5-1, 2-0) hope to stay on course for an Oct. 24showdown with region leader Lawrence County. Brookhaven (3-2, 2-1)tries to rebound from a lopsided 63-21 loss to Lawrence County.

The Rebels are coached by Mario Lane. They are seeking theirfirst state playoff berth since 2001. Lane’s Rebels are fresh froma 40-6 trouncing of region doormat Port Gibson.

Ole Brook head coach Tucker Peavey said the Rebels have severaloutstanding athletes on their squad this year. “They have some bigtall receivers who are 6-3 and 6-4; and weigh 200 pounds.

“Their quarterback (Isaiah James) moves around real well.” James(5-11, 180, soph.) has a strong passing arm.

In the Rebels’ 33-21 victory against Mendenhall three weeks ago,James completed 9 of 16 passes for 254 yards and 3 touchdowns.

One of his primary targets is senior tight end EmmanuelJefferies (6-4, 215).

“They have an offensive lineman (Emmanuel McCray) who hascommitted to Ole Miss,” said Peavey. “They have linebackers who arebeing recruited by Division I schools.”

Gray (6-5, 280) anchors at solid offensive line.

Linebacker Patrick Black (6-0, 205, jr.) had a big game againstFlorence. Black was credited with 15 tackles and two blocked puntsin the win over Port Gibson.

Two weeks ago, the Rebels lost 34-13 to Taylorsville, the No.1-ranked team in Class 2A.

Peavey said the Panthers would be tested on defense. “They run aspread offense with multiple formations. They can pass and run theball well.”

Asked about his team’s preparations, Peavey said injuriescontinue to take toll on his team. Wide receiver Trent Powellsustained a fractured finger against Lawrence County and hadsurgery Wednesday. Powell is expected to miss the rest of theseason.

“We are working on basics this week,” said Peavey. “With theyouth and inexperience we have on defense, we didn’t adjust toLawrence County’s offense very well.”

Sophomore wide receiver Duwone Harris was named Brook’sOffensive Player of the Week for his performance against LawrenceCounty. He caught 7 passes for 111 yards.

Running back Semmie Smith returned to action and rushed for 49yards and 2 TDs against Lawrence County.

On defense, the Panthers were led by linebacker Issac Jones with5 solo tackles and 2 assists. Cornerback Devonte Stewart had 5tackles. Cordai Henderson and Joseph Owens each had 4 stops.

Panther Paws: Last year on King Field, the Panthers realized a31-26 homecoming win against Forest Hill as quarterback Charles(Bobo) Rancifer rushed for 2 touchdowns and passed for another.Simmie Yarborough caught 1 TD pass and ran for another.

Forest Hill quarterback Jason Johnson passed for 377 yards and 3touchdowns.