Philadelphia continues postseason tradition
By By Marty Stamper / EMG sports assistant
Nov. 7, 2002
The Philadelphia Tornadoes will be making their sixth straight state playoff appearance and their 16th overall Friday night when they travel to Copiah County to take on the Hazlehurst Indians. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. as all playoff games will begin 30 minutes earlier than usual.
Philadelphia holds a 4-3 lead in the series. Six of the previous seven meetings were in the 1940s. None of the previous seven have been closer than 12 points with the last meeting resulting in a 37-14 Tornado victory in the 1988 Class 3A state playoffs.
Both teams have produced NFL players. Philadelphia has been represented by Fred McAfee and Marcus Dupree, while Hazlehurst's claim to fame is former Jackson State running back Lewis Tillman, who went on to play for the New York Giants.
Philadelphia finished fourth in Division 5-3A, while Hazlehurst won Division 7-3A. The Tornadoes are averaging 22.1 points and giving up 14.5. The Indians are scoring 25.9 and allowing 11.0.
Leading the Tornado defense in tackles are Matt Corrigan (142), Daniel Puckett (80), Eric Lyons (63), Alan Fox (56), and James Seales (56). Leading the offense is quarterback Tyler Threadgill with nine touchdown passes and 846 yards rushing. Threadgill has scored 11 touchdowns. Chris McCurty and Desmond Murray have both rushed for over 390 yards. Top receivers are Cameron Tawater and Orie Hudson.
The Indians have their tools as well.
Philadelphia blanked Florence 23-0 last week.
Pelahatchie at Nanih Waiya
Nanih Waiya can claim a playoff berth with a win over Pelahatchie Friday night. A Pelahatchie win would leave both teams at 5-4 in Region 3-1A and would give the No. 4 berth to Thomastown regardless of the outcome of the Bulldogs' game at Sebastopol since Thomastown will either finish 6-3 with a win or would have beaten the higher-seeded team in Union if all three are 5-4.
Brent Blackwell had long touchdown receptions of 52 and 77 yards in the Warriors' 29-8 win over Thomastown last week.
Jerry Richardson scored on a 34-yard run and a 57-yard pass for Pelahatchie in a 38-12 win over Edinburg last week.
Leake Academy at Marshall Academy
The Rebels have lost their last two regular season games heading into Friday's Academy AA playoff contest at Holly Springs. Both teams are 8-3 overall.
More familiar with each other on the basketball court, this is the first meeting of the two in football.
First-year Leake head coach Brian Pickens has some up close knowledge of Marshall as the former Oak Hill mentor faced the Patriots the last two years.
Lanier at Noxubee County
The Tigers beat West Point 20-7 last week to capture the Division 2-4A championship as Omarr Conner threw for two touchdowns and ran for another. Noxubee, 9-1, will host Lanier, 6-4, this week in first-round play in the Class 4A playoffs.
Lanier's Jebari Amos scored four touchdowns and had 118 yards on just seven carries in last week's 53-14 pasting of Humphreys County. Lealex Martin led the Bulldogs' defense with 18 tackles and a fumble recovery.
Louisville at Pearl
Both teams enter the first-round Class 4A playoff game with 6-4 slates.
Louisville steamrolled Kosciusko 38-7 last week to insure a winning season. Pearl did likewise with a 24-6 win over Canton.
Brandon Dotson led the Wildcats in last week's win over Kosciusko as he had 160 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 11 carries.
Justin Knight led the Pirates against Canton as he scored on runs of 46 and 28 yards.
Noxapater at Edinburg
The Tigers and Eagles finish out their seasons tonight at Edinburg. Noxapater blanked Sebastopol 20-0 last week to improve to 2-6 in Region 3-1A and 2-8 overall. Edinburg fell to 1-7 and 2-8 with a 38-12 loss at Pelahatchie.
The Warriors finished their season last week with a 28-19 Division 5-3A win at Southeast Lauderdale. Choctaw Central wound up with a 3-7 mark for its first losing season since 1994. The Warriors scored 15.3 points per outing, but gave up 24.6.
The Rockets finished their season on a high note last week as they beat New Hope 26-0 in a Division 2-4A game to end up 2-8 overall for the second-straight year. Kevin Marshall ran the ball 20 times for 154 yards and two touchdowns.
For the year, Neshoba averaged 11.3 points per contest and gave up 20.0.
The Wildcats missed the playoffs by losing 44-7 to South Leake last week. South Leake's reward, however, is a Friday night date at Taylorsville, 7-3.
Kemper County, 1-9, averaged 12 points per game this fall, while surrendering a hefty 37.7.