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Lawrence County punches South State ticket with OT win

The Lawrence County Cougars defeated the Newton County Cougars 13-7 — in overtime — to advance to the south 4A football finals. Friday’s game was played at Newton County High School in Decatur.

In overtime, Lawrence County’s Perez Tyler scored on a 4-yard run, giving the Cougars a 13-7 lead. Eduardo Del Angel’s extra point attempt was blocked.

Newton County’s overtime possession came down to a fourth-and-goal situation from the five-yard line. The Newton County quarterback was hampered by a high snap from center. He attempted to scramble but was grabbed by Lawrence County’s Treizjan McLain. McLain held on until a host of Cougars could dump the quarterback, ending the game and Newton County’s season.

Lawrence County took a 7-0 lead on a 49-yard touchdown run by Kylan Cooper late in the first quarter. It remained 7-0 until midway in the third quarter, when Newton County tied the game on a 37-yard touchdown pass.

The TD catch was hauled in by sophomore Tyron Henderson and was only the fourth passing touchdown by Newton County this season.

The two teams battled evenly thereafter, with both defenses getting the better of it. Newton County twice attempted field goals in the second half that went awry. That set up the overtime period.

With the victory, Jesse Anderson’s Cougars improved to 9-5 on the season. Newton County and coach Bobby Bass end their season at 8-6.

The win advances the Cougars to the south 4A title game for the second time in five years. Lawrence County will travel to Poplarville, who defeated previously unbeaten South Pike 31-20 on Friday. Lawrence County and Poplarville were members of the same region for the last two seasons.

Game time is 7 p.m. this Friday

Story by Craig Davis