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Hayes owns speed, strength

Marquis Hayes showcased his strength and speed in last Friday’s14-13 win against Madison St. Joseph. The Loyd Star senior rushed27 times for 179 yards and scored touchdowns on runs of 43 and 58yards.

That performance has earned Hayes The DAILY LEADER’s OffensivePlayer of the Week award.

Loyd Star first-year head coach Randall Huffman inherited arebuilding team with a few starters returning from last year’s 10-2state playoff edition. Fourteen seniors graduated and two returningstarters transferred to Brookhaven Academy. Hayes has been a brightspot this season, helping the Hornets to a 2-4 record and anopening win in Region 6-2A action.

“Marquis has good vision, good speed and good quickness,” saidHuffman. He’s strong for his size and he does a good job on bothsides of the ball. He’s coachable in practice, too.”

Hayes (5-8, 155) boasts 4.47 speed in the 40-yard dash. In theweight room, he benches 250 pounds and squats with 500.

“We have been playing a lot of hard teams,” said Hayes. The Hornetslost their season opener to Class 3A Franklin County and were blownout by Class 4A power North Pike two weeks ago. They also lost toNatchez Cathedral and Richland before beating Bogue Chitto fortheir first win of the season.

“We could have played better against St. Joe,” said Hayes. Hornetkicker Corrie Crowe provide two extra points for the margin ofvictory and Loyd Star made several big plays on defense.

Hayes plays free safety on defense. He likes offense the best. Lastyear Hayes rushed for 1,087 yards and caught eight passes for 198yards.

He said Loyd Star’s offensive line “works hard every week to getbetter.”

Working in the front trench are center Cody Teekel, right guardCody Beeson, left guard Zach Edthridge, right tackle Cody Lanham,left tackle Joseph Fredenburg and tight end Travis Sorrels.

“Quarterback Korey Allen and Marquis Sims made some good blocks forme, too,” said Hayes.

Hayes is the 17-year-old son of Tara and James Beard. He has threebrothers: Javion, Tarion and James Jr., who all attend Loyd Star.Javion is a junior high quarterback.

Looking to the future, Hayes said he has been offered a baseballscholarship by Copiah-Lincoln Community College. He plays theoutfield for Loyd Star in the spring season. In the classroom, he’san A-B student.

Coming up Friday is a big region home game against unbeatenarchrival Wesson. The Hornets edged Wesson in overtime last yearand Hayes had a big return for a touchdown.

In his spare time, Hayes enjoys watching Southern Miss and OhioState play football. His favorite NFL player is Minnesota Vikingsrunning back Adrian Peterson.