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Louisville overcomes big plays, Columbus


Ray Hollivay Sr. Special to the Dispatch



LOUISVILLE -- Big plays nearly proved to be too much for the Louisville High School football team to overcome. 


But the Wildcats used a key turnover in the fourth quarter and a strong running game to regain their focus and beat Columbus 36-28 Friday night. 


Jim Goss'' interception of a Cedrick Jackson pass midway through the fourth quarter gave Louisville (2-3) the ball back in prime scoring territory. A 10-yard run by C.J. Bates on second down gave the Wildcats a first down at the Columbus 13. Bates gained 6 yards on the next carry before Davais Schaffer scored what proved to be the winning touchdown with a little more than five minutes remaining in the game. A pass from Tajh Ford to Bates gave Louisville the final margin. 


The score helped Louisville avoid the embarrassment of losing a 28-7 lead in the third quarter. 


Louisville first-year head coach M.C. Miller, the longtime coach at Noxubee County, said he and his assistant coaches have to get their players focused to play 48 minutes. 


"They want to play a while and stop a while, play a while stop a while," Miller said. "We just have to keep working with the. We have a young ballclub, and we just have to work with them to show them how to fight until the end of the ballgame." 


Columbus (2-2) used the big play to get back into the game. Quarterback Cedrick Jackson connected with Deontae Jones on scoring passes of 51 and 66 yards in the third quarter to help the Falcons regain the momentum.  


Running back Damian Baker (15 carries, 100 yards) scored his second touchdown of the night, a 4-yard run, early in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 28. The Falcons missed the conversion. 


"We just told them you had to play in the second half or you were going to get beat real bad," Columbus coach Tony Stanford said. "They kind of responded. They played hard and made a few plays that helped them and made a few turnovers that hurt them. 


"Like in the second game of the season against Noxubee County (a 27-6 loss) we hurt ourselves more than we helped ourselves." 


Miller moved Bates, who also played quarterback and wide receiver, to cornerback late in the game so he could help contain Jones. Bates said his goal was to prevent Jones (nine catches, 175 yards) from making another big play. 


"I felt like we had to get more aggressive (in the second half)," Bates said. "We knew they were going to come out and try to change some things on our running game, so we had to pick it up and ball with them." 


A sack and an interception ended Columbus'' final two drives. Despite the comeback, Stanford knows his team will have a lot to work on this week as it prepares for its Class 6A, region 1 opener Friday at Tupelo. 


"We would like to start our division play with a win," Stanford said. "We need to work real hard to get to that point. Tupelo has a real good team and is undefeated."



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Reader Comments

Article Comment black eagle commented at 9/19/2010 9:32:00 AM:

Maybe if Columbus spend less time partying in hotel rooms with guns and weed they could get it done on the field. And I bet they let these same kids play Friday night. Coach it is called discipline. A good coach would not have let these back on the team.


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