Delta escapes Lions den, 24-14
By By Jeff Byrd/The Meridian Star
November 4, 2001
SCOOBA East Mississippi played it's best game at home all season on Saturday, but it wasn't enough to derail Mississippi Delta here at Sullivan-Windham Stadium.
Delta quarterback Berkedius Womack ran for two touchdowns and threw for another to lead the Trojans to the 24-14 victory. The win wrapped up a 6-0 mark in North Division for Delta who will host East Central in a first round playoff game next week in Moorhead.
For the Lions, the loss ended a disappointing season which saw them lose their final six games after a 2-1 start. They ended the year at 2-7 overall and 1-5 in the division.
Delta, which built a 24-6 lead at the half, helped the Lions stay in it by making five turnovers.
Following a trade of field goals, Delta took charge with a pair of touchdown drives led by Womack. His 13-yard TD run capped a nine-play, 77-yard drive late in the first quarter.
Jay Jones' PAT kick made it 10-3 with 3:05 left in the first quarter.
An interception by Delta's Rowland Robertson set up the next Trojan score. Womack darted in on a 13-yard scamper on the first play of the second quarter to finish the four-play, 20-yard march. Jones' kick made it 17-3 with 14:55 left in the second quarter.
The second of Delta's five follies occurred five minutes later when a bad punt snap allowed the Lions to take over at the 17. The Lions were unable to advance the ball and settled for a 37-yard field goal by Frank Dimino to cut the Delta lead to 17-6 with 9:14 left in the half.
The Trojan defense stopped the Lions on a fourth-and-one at the Delta 43. MDCC then marched 57 yards in eight plays with the score coming on Womack's 11-yard TD pass to Tavares Gideon. Jones' kick made it 24-6 with 56.7 seconds left in the half.
MDCC's third mistake set up the Lions inside the Trojans 46. The Lions reached the 23 before stalling on downs.
A 47-yard pass from Scotty Elliott to Maurice Cunningham on the final play of the third quarter gave the Lions another golden opportunity.
Elliot, however, mis-fired on four straight passes to open the quarter, killing the drive at the Trojan 18.
Delta's fourth turnover set in motion another Lion chance. They reached the Trojan three before Elliot was dropped on fourth down.
East finally broke through with 26.7 seconds left when Elliot hit Kendrick Woodard on a 20-yard TD pass. Elliot then threw to Michael Johnson for the two-point conversion to make it 24-14.
Jones made a 46-yard field goal to open the scoring in the first quarter. Dimino answered with a 41-yard kick with 7:38 left in the opening quarter.
Elliot, a West Lauderdale product, finished 16 of 40 for 180 yards. Johnson caught eight passes for 86 yards.
Womack had 117 yards rushing on 14 carries and was five of 10 passing for 71. Noah Ingram added 71 yards rushing.
Jeff Byrd is a sports writer for the Meridian Star. He can be reached at 693-1551 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.