By Brandon Speck
PONTOTOC – Amory caught one pass Friday night in Pontotoc.
That came courtesy of linebacker Marcus Glenn on a pass not thrown by his quarterback. Glenn’s sealing pick closed out Amory’s 34-24 Division 1-4A win against the No. 5 large school Warriors.
Amory ran 52 plays down in The Hollow, literally running on all 52, and emerged an unexpected 2-0 in the division. Senior T.J. Fields carried it 29 times for 237 yards and two touchdowns.
“I want to start with my coaches, preparing us all week and our O-line, we ran behind them all night,” Fields said. “We got the job done.”
Down 17-14 at the half, the Panthers (4-4, 2-0) scored 21 unanswered on runs from Monzavier Latham (5), Austin Carter (80) and Fields (39).
Carter had 105 yards on 11 carries, Latham 83 and two scores on 11 carries.
“Watching film, they struggled with teams getting in their wildcat, heavy stuff,” Amory coach Ben Ashley said. “But we don’t really have a wildcat package. We’ve just got a bunch of guys that we feel like are good football players. We’ll snap it to any one of them.”
Ashley said Amory will still work on the passing game and has three regular season games to try it. Friday was its first road win of the season. The Panthers have three division games remaining, including Friday at Shannon and the finale at Corinth.
Like its 2-4 start, things were rocky early on Friday. A bad snap on a punt deep in its own territory led to Jacob Carter’s 16-yard touchdown to Gabe Wilson. Another bad snap on Amory’s next possession led to a punt and Pontotoc 14-0 lead on Austin Morphis’ nine-yard run.
“We had a rough time stopping them,” Pontotoc (5-3, 1-1) coach Jeff Carter said. “That was a good gameplan, try to keep our offense off the field.”
Turning Point: Up four points, Amory leading rusher Austin Carter broke off an 80-yard touchdown run midway through the third quarter.
Point Man: Amory RB T.J. Fields rushed for 237 yards and two TDs on 29 carries.
Talking Point: “Every Monday we start practice by putting the ball on the 10 yard line, our offense vs. our defense and we try to kill each other.” – Amory coach Ben Ashley
• His team up 34-24, Amory fullback D’Andre McGinister fell on a fumble inside his own 30 with less than seven minutes to play.
• Pontotoc QB Jacob Carter switched from No. 10 to No. 23, as Pontotoc dedicated the game to junior FS Trey Shelton. Shelton is out for the year with his second torn ACL in two years.
• On Amory’s second touchdown drive, Pontotoc jumped offside on a fourth-and-4 punt attempt.
• Amory lost three snaps in the first quarter and if not for a flag, would have lost another in the second.