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Duckworth delights in making stops

Brookhaven Academy senior defensive end C.J. Duckworth had hisbest game for the Cougars Friday night. He accounted for 17tackles, five of them for losses, as the Cougars whipped CentralHinds Academy 42-13 on R.M. “Red” Stuard Field.

That chart-leading total has earned Duckworth The DAILY LEADER’sDefensive Player of the Week honors.

Brookhaven Academy head coach Herbert Davis said Duckworth playedan exceptional game. “C.J. was all over the place. He put awhipping on them. Five of (tackles) for a loss.”

Duckworth, a 6-foot-3, 200-pound athlete, transferred from LoydStar last summer and made an immediate impact on the defendingClass AA state championship squad. He also plays tight end onoffense for the unbeaten (5-0) Cougars.

“C.J. has fit in with our defensive scheme,” said Davis. “C.J.plays great technique and he’s quick. He understands leverage andgets off the blocks well. Most importantly, he just playshard.”

Asked about his performance, Duckworth took a workmanlike approach.”I just went out there and did what I was taught in practice byCoach (Kenny) Williams and Coach Davis. I was just havingfun.”

What are his responsibilities as a strongside defensive end?

“I have multiple jobs,” answered Duckworth. “Mainly, I take care ofthe run and rush the quarterback. I try to keep the offensivelinemen off our linebackers so they can make the tackles. Myfavorite play is sacking the quarterback.”

Duckworth, who prefers initials instead of his full name,Christopher Jay, is the 17-year-old son of J.B. and Dana McCarroll.He has three stepsisters, one sister and one younger brother. Inhis spare time he enjoys helping his dad who is ataxidermist.

The BA Cougars are recognized most for their high-scoring offense.In five games they’re averaging over a point a minute.

The team’s defense had been taken for granted but they assertedthemselves in the win over Central Hinds, a previously unbeatenteam. “From what we had been told, we weren’t very good. We cameout with a chip on our shoulders and got the job done. We have alot of guys who love to play defense.”

Working on the other side at defensive end are Bailey Hodge andColby Culbertson. At tackle are Cameron Barry and Ken Britt.

Looking to the future, Duckworth said he wants to play collegefootball. His long-range plan is to major in mechanical engineeringat Mississippi State.

Math is his favorite subject but he is enjoying his time in EnglishIV. The class is reading Agatha Christie’s “And Then There WereNone.”

The BA Cougars invade Simpson County Academy Friday night andDuckworth anticipates a strong challenge. “Simpson is the team tobeat. They will come at you and hit you in the mouth. We will haveto play better than we did against Central Hinds.”

Duckworth and his teammates are taking it one game at a time asthey seek their 21st straight victory.