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franklin county times

EMCC staff deals with tragic loss and Holmes

By By Jeff Byrd/The Meridian Star
Oct. 19, 2001
It has been a tough week for Head Coach Tom Goode and his East Mississippi Lions coaching staff. Not only is the team battling a three-game skid, on Sunday came news of the tragic passing of EMCC Head Mens Basketball Coach Steve Hull.
On Thursday afternoon, Goode and his staff escorted the Lions basketball team to Hull's funeral at the Chunky United Methodist Church. Practice for the Lions' football team was pushed back to an evening workout under the lights.
The Lions will host the 1-5 Holmes Bulldogs in EMCC's annual homecoming contest at 2 p.m. at Windham-Sullivan Field. At halftime, EMCC will salute its first class of inductees into its Sports Hall of Fame.
Goode said the Lions and Bulldogs have had similar type seasons. East comes in with a 2-4 record and has lost three straight including last week's 30-6 loss played in Scooba monsoon.
The Lions have lost all three of their home games, and all were by sizable margins. Copiah Lincoln shut them out 22-0 and Northeast romped 41-14.
Offense has been Holmes' problem. The Bulldogs have averaged just over 10 points per game while giving up 24.6. They were beaten by nationally ranked Northwest 17-0 last week.
The lone win was a 28-17 decision against Itawamba. East fell to the ICC Indians 18-17 in a game that ended in controversy over a late field goal.
Both teams rank near the bottom of the Region 23 offensive stats. Holmes has averaged 252 yards per game while East comes in at 226.
Holmes' defense is a strong point. They ranked first in the region in pass defense allowing just 83.6 yards per game. East has the league's worst run defense allowing a whopping 185.2 yards.
East will counter an offensive unit that is led by tailback David Yeates and quarterback Scotty Elliot.
Yeates has rushed for 408 yards on 94 carries with one TD. Elliot, a West Lauderdale product, has completed 34 of 56 passes for 399 yards and three TDs.
Michael Johnson is the top receiver with 19 catches for 256 yards and three TDs.
Two freshmen linebackers lead the Lions in tackles. Kenneth Hollis of Birmingham has made a team high 40 tackles while Joe White of New Hope has 34 stops.
Jeff Byrd is a sports writer for the Meridian Star. He can be reached at 693-1551 or by e-mail at j.byrd@atthemeridianstar.com.

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