Friday Night Lights Look-Ahead — High School Football Previews for Area Schools

Published 5:00 pm Thursday, November 4, 2021

Brookhaven High at South Jones

7 p.m. Thursday

SJHS Football Field, Ellisville

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There are a lot of moving parts playing out Thursday as Brookhaven High hopes to leap all the way to the no.2 seed in Region 3-5A. The first part of the equation is for the Panthers (5-3) to win in Ellisville at South Jones (3-6).

West Jones and Hattiesburg both are 5-1 in region play while Wayne County, Laurel and BHS are all knotted with 4-2 records. The Panthers have wins over HHS and Laurel and losses to West Jones and Wayne County this season. They’ll be pulling for Laurel against Hattiesburg in the 100th meeting between those longtime rivals while also rooting for West Jones to knock off Wayne County in that matchup Thursday night.

The last time these two teams met…

The schools have played in the same region for over a consecutive decade now as BHS leads the all-time series 9-4 after losing the first two meetings between the schools in 1989 and 1990. Last season, BHS won 28-17 in Ellisville for a fifth straight win over the Braves.

What to watch for Brookhaven High?

The Brookhaven High rushing attack piled up 341 yards and six touchdowns on the ground in a 49-20 win at Natchez last week. Coach Tucker Peavey’s team is peaking at the right time as they’ve won three in a row heading into the regular season finale.

What to watch for South Jones?

The Braves snapped a six-game losing streak last week with a 28-26 win at Florence. SJHS coach Todd Breland is in his second season at the school after working for the eight years prior at Laurel High. Breland won a 5A state title in 2014 at Laurel High.


Enterprise at Mount Olive

7 p.m. Thursday

Pirate Football Field, Mount Olive

The return to 1A football wraps up with a trip to Covington County for Enterprise in the season finale. The Yellow Jackets (4-6) are facing a Mount Olive (5-4) team that reflects the overall depth in Region 4-1A. EAC coach Trey Woodard had said that some good teams would miss the playoffs in the loaded, eight-team region and Mount Olive is proof of that. The Pirates lost 14-8 to Taylorsville, 12-8 to Lumberton and 14-6 to Richton as they’ll finish as the fifth-place team, one spot out of the postseason in 2021.

The last time these two teams met…

Long time members of the same district, going all the way back to 1965, there might not be a school located outside the immediate area that Enterprise has played more often over the years. The Pirates hold a 21-5 advantage all-time in the series and won 44-8 the last time the teams played in 2016. A year before though, it was EAC doing the plundering as they won 48-6 at Mount Olive.

What to watch for Enterprise?

Lats week the Jackets couldn’t stop the Resurrection Catholic passing game as the Eagles from Pascagoula threw for 332 yards and four scores in a 48-12 win. Receiver Jonas “Trap”Caldwell led the EAC offense with three catches for 69 yards and one score while senior running back Seth Mitchell rushed 15 times for 94 yards as well.


What to watch for Mount Olive?

Senior Quandarius Hubbard is the motor that drives Mount Olive as he’s rushed 101 times for 1,078 yards and is averaging 10.7 yards per carry. Hubbard has run for 12 touchdowns this season as he runs behind 6-foot-6, 354-pound senior lineman Zyrus Craft. Craft holds offers from Mississippi State and Ole Miss among others.


Brookhaven Academy vs. Kirk Academy

7 p.m. Friday

R.M. “Red” Stuard Field, Brookhaven

After an opening round bye, the Brookhaven Academy Cougars (8-2) are hosting the Kirk Academy Raiders (6-5) of Grenada in the MAIS 4A playoffs. Kirk kept their season alive with a 7-6 win over Marshall Academy in the opening round. It was the second meeting of the season for the schools as Marshall won the first matchup 21-18.

The last time these two teams met…

BA hosted Kirk Academy in the 2019 postseason and beat the Raiders 27-0 in that game. That was the first ever meeting between the schools.

What to watch for Brookhaven Academy?

The Cougars have won five in a row and even this late in the season, they’re still trying to sharpen offensive execution. The last time out they beat Wayne Academy35-13 behind a steady ground attack led by senior quarterback Tyler Fortenberry and running back John Rivers Brown. One explosive passing play in that win went to senior receiver Logan Alexander and against Kirk the Cougars would like to pick up chunks of yardage through the air as they hope to jump out to an early lead.

What to watch for Kirk Academy?

Slowing down senior running back AJ Wren of Kirk will be one of the keys for coach Anthony Hart’s BA defense. Wren is one of a handful of players that transferred to Kirk after Charleston High cancelled football in 2020 due to COVID-19. The Raiders were 3-7 last season under first year coach Mike Beagle. The 6-5 record this season for the team is the first time that Kirk Academy has finished above .500 since 2008. That year KA went 12-3 and lost in the MAIS AA State Championship to Centreville Academy.


Bogue Chitto vs. Pelahatchie

7 p.m. Friday

Troy Smith Field, Bogue Chitto

Blocking is going to be huge for the Bogue Chitto Bobcats (8-2) when they host a fast, athletic group of Pelahatchie Chiefs (5-5) in the MHSAA 2A playoffs first round. The Bogue Chitto offensive line is an experienced group and the Bobcats have been good at playing possession football this season while relying on a swarming defense. BC coach Gareth Sartin and his team want to grind down the Pelahatchie defense and keep the Chief’s offense on the sideline as much as possible.

The last time these two teams met…

BC won 25-22 in a second-round playoff game when the teams last played in 2012. They are 3-0 all-time against Pelahatchie going back to a series that started in 2007.

What to watch for Bogue Chitto?

The Bobcat defense is giving up just 14 points per game in 2021.The group is led by linebackers Easton Sartin and Colten Bales. A sophomore, Sartin has made a team high 82 tackles while the senior Bales has been in on 79 stops himself. Sartin has recovered a team high four fumbles while Colton Frith and Cameron Williams lead the BC defense with two interceptions apiece.

What to watch for Pelahatchie?

The senior duo of JD Williams and Quay Ragsdale are two of the main playmakers for Pelahatchie on both sides of the ball. Pelahatchie lost 52-0 to region champs Scott Central (10-0) and 41-20 to division runners-up Velma Jackson (7-2). The Chiefs dominated the other teams in Region 6-2A though. They beat Pisgah 48-6 and Puckett 34-0 to secure third place in the region.


Loyd Star vs. Pisgah

7 p.m. Friday

W.E. “Sambo” Smith Field, Brookhaven

The Loyd Star Hornets (10-1) want to keep a memorable season going when they host the Pisgah Dragons (3-7) in a MHSAA 2A first round playoff game. Last week Pisgah beat St. Andrew’s 33-14. Loyd Star and St. Andrew’s played twice this season with the Hornets winning 26-23 in overtime at home and losing 35-29 at St. Andrew’s.

The last time these two teams met…

The Hornets took on the Dragons in the regular season each year between 2017-2020 and lost all four games. The last matchup was a 35-18 win by Pisgah in Sand Hill. The Dragons whipped Loyd Star 41-7 at home in 2019 and beat the Hornets 42-30 in 2018.

What to watch for Loyd Star?

Sophomore fullback James Goodwin is just 50 yards away from hitting the century mark for Loyd Star. Goodwin has run the ball 100 times for 950 yards and 11 touchdowns. Junior Julius Smith is second on the team with 10 rushing scores. The Hornets were a little banged up last week in a win over Amite County, but should be close to being back to full strength when they face the Dragons in the first round.

What to watch for Pisgah?

Pisgah coach Michael Granberry has built a program that’s know for running the ball with success. A sub .500 regular season this year broke a string of seven straight winning campaigns for Granberry at the school, but the Dragons are still nothing to take lightly.

Senior running back Kyshaun Gates leads the Pisgah offense. Gates has rushed 175 times for 1,061 yards and 16 touchdowns in 2021.


Wesson at Tylertown High

7 p.m., Friday

THS Field, Tylertown

No one has gotten closer to beating the Tylertown Chiefs (10-0) in 2021 than the Wesson Cobras (4-6). In the KDMC Kickoff Classic back on Aug. 28, the Cobras led 30-6 with 13 minutes remaining in the game. The Chiefs came storming back behind the play of Ole Miss commit Jeremiah Dillon to take an eventual 46-30 win. Dillon currently sits at 41catches for 16 scores thus far in 2021. The Chiefs have not truly been tested since a 26-14 win over Lawrence County in late September.

The last time these two teams met…

The win earlier this season gave Tylertown an 8-2 advantage in all games played between the schools.

What to watch for Wesson?

Junior quarterback Will Loy went 10-of-15 for 197 yards and three scores last week in a win over McLaurin. Tarayvian Miler, Justin Hailey and Deshawn Smith had a touchdown grab each in the win. Wesson coach Jeremy Loy and his team got a big boost against McLaurin as junior tight end/defensive end Cody Munn returned after missing much of the season with an injury.

What to watch for Tylertown?

THS quarterback Amerion Jefferson, a 5-foot-8 sophomore, has thrown for over 2,000 yards and 28 touchdowns to lead a lethal offense for coach Osborne Holmes. In four combined Region 7-3A games, the Chiefs outscored Franklin County, Wilkinson County, Jefferson County and Port Gibson by a combined total of 204-0.


Lawrence County at McComb High

7 p.m., Friday

C.C. Moore Stadium, McComb

Coach Jesse Anderson and his Lawrence County Cougars (6-4) were members of Region 6-4A for the last two seasons before moving to Region 7 this year. A first-round playoff matchup against McComb High (4-5) has LC facing one of its former Region 6 foes on the road.

The last time these two teams met…

McComb won 32-7 last season and the Cougars took the 2019 meeting by a 20-13 margin. McComb won the first nine games in the series that began in 1989. The Tigers hold a 17-9 series lead.

What to watch for Lawrence County?

The Cougars are battle-tested and have seen two of the top 4A teams in the state — Poplarville and Columbia High — in their own region. Blocking up front will be huge as Lawrence County runs a double wing offense and is facing a McComb defensive line that has some size.

What to watch for McComb?

McComb High started the season out with two forfeit losses due to COVID-19. When they got on the field the Tigers lost 18-8 to Brookhaven High and 14-12 to Moss Point. The first win of the season was a 20-15 victory over South Pike before the Tigers and coach Willie Brown lost 19-12 to the region champs at North Pike. A 48-13 win over Raymond last week locked up second place and a home playoff game for MHS.