SOUTHAVEN– For the second straight game Pontotoc (1-1) found itself in a position to win late, but unlike in week one, the Warriors fell just short on Friday against DeSoto Central in a 27-21 loss.
“We just didn’t make the opportune stop when we needed to, and they were able to make the opportune plays when they needed them,” said Pontotoc head coach Jeff Carter. “They got key first downs, protected the football and controlled the tempo well all night.”
The Jaguars scored on their first drive when Jason Curry hit Joshua Johnson for a 17-yard touchdown, and they led 7-0 at the end of the first quarter. DeSoto Central took a 13-0 lead early in the second quarter on a 3-yard run by Richard Coleman. Jason Curry later scored on a 6-yard run to extend the Jaguar lead to 19-0.
Jordan Ball broke loose for a 57-yard touchdown run for the Warriors to cut the deficit to 19-7 at halftime.
The Warriors opened up the second half with a scoring drive. Jemarkus Whitfield cut the Jaguars' lead to 19-14 with a 29-yard touchdown run halfway through the third quarter. DeSoto Central answered on the following drive with a Marquis Fields touchdown run and 2-point conversion to extend their lead to 27-14.
Pontotoc scored on the first play of the fourth quarter when Conner Armstrong hit Nic Townsend for a 6-yard touchdown to make it 27-21. Pontotoc then forced DeSoto Central to turn the ball over on downs on its next two drives and had the ball with under two minutes to go. The Warriors could not find the end zone, however, and dropped a tough road game to a solid 6A school.
“We missed a lot of tackles and didn’t execute well for most of the night, and it cost us,” said coach Carter. “We were still right there in it, going toe to toe with them, but we missed our opportunities late in the game; they didn’t, and that was the difference.”
Jordan Ball led the Warriors with 98 yards rushing and a touchdown. Jemarkus Whitfield rushed for 82 yards and a touchdown as well. Cade Armstrong had four receptions for 67 yards, and Nic Townsend finished with four receptions for 13 yards and a touchdown.
Pontotoc (1-1) will host Houston on Friday night.