Rogers sparks BA

Published 6:00 pm Sunday, September 19, 2010

Brookhaven Academy quarterback Chandler Rogers is recognizedacross the Magnolia State for his strong-armed passing skills. Thetalented senior showcased his running strength Friday night,rushing for five touchdowns in BA’s 42-13 victory over the CentralHinds Academy Cougars.

Rogers scored on runs of 3, 1, 2, 17 and 47 yards. He alsocompleted 11 of 18 passes for 197 yards as the Cougars remainedundefeated in five games and captured their 20th straightvictory.

“The defense was going with our running backs on the option andthat left me open,” said Rogers. The five rushing TDs were acareer-high. Last year he passed for six TDs in one game.

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BA head coach Herbert Davis said the running ability displayed byRogers was no surprise. His signal caller rushed for over 1,000yards last season in BA’s march to a perfect 15-0 record and theMAIS Class AA state championship.

“Chandler gets mad at me when I don’t let him run,” laughed Davis.”That’s kind of an X factor when he runs.”

Rogers sparked his team to a 21-0 halftime lead. They scored ontheir first possession and led 8-0 when Rogers ran the 2-pointconversion out of a faked PAT kick.

CHA head coach Todd Montgomery said his large, strong team couldn’toutmuscle the BA team in the front line. “They beat us in thetrenches. Their big guys outplayed our big guys. We didn’t get thejob done up front. We average 255 (pounds) across the front.”

Montgomery recognized the running skill of Rogers. “Chandler is 42points worth tonight. When he starts scrambling, you can’t beatthem.”

The visitors (4-1, 1-1) beat themselves in the first half withthree interceptions. CHA quarterback Jordan Currie was picked offby Jeff Rushing, Eli Gatlin and Bubba Keene. Gatlin’s pick wasreturned to the 1-yard line, setting up BA’s third TD.

BA defensive lineman Cameron Barry said the Cougars had somethingto prove. “Everybody was saying how bad our defense is. They saidwe couldn’t stop anybody but we stepped up tonight. We had to bemore physical in the line.”

CHA’s big running backs were bottled up the first half and limitedto 71 yards on the ground. They picked up steam after the game wasout of doubt as Hunter Farrior rushed 15 times for 103 yards.

BA led 35-zip after Rogers zigged and zagged through the CHAdefense on a 47-yard jaunt. CHA scored at the close of the thirdquarter on a 15-yard pass from Currie to Farrior.

Senior running back Jennings Mills ignited the next BA drive with a39-yard kickoff return. Five plays later, Mills zipped the final 18yards for a TD, making it 42-6 with 10:33 left in the game.

“I thought we played really good on defense,” said Davis. “I toldour defense they need to have a chip on their shoulder. They havebeen overlooked.”

The only negative in the victory was a broken collarbone sustainedby senior strong safety Mark Rushing. He was carried by ambulanceto KDMC for further examination with 4:15 left in the game. Rushingbravely gave a thumbs-up sign as he was carried by stretcher to theambulance.

“Mark is our captain on defense,” said Davis.

On defense, linebacker C.J. Duckworth led BA with 17 tackles.Bailey Hodge had 15 tackles and a blocked extra point. Alan MichaelAllred had 12 tackles.

CHA got 11 tackles from Beau Lowery.

BA faces another strong test Friday night, visiting unbeatenSimpson County Academy at Mendenhall.