Bobcats improve to 4-0 with win over East Central

Steve Buckley, Jones College
Steve Buckley, Jones College
Published: Sep. 22, 2022 at 11:13 PM CDT
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Jones College Sports Information

ELLISVILLE, Miss. (WDAM) - Fifth-rated Jones College held off East Central 17-14 here Thursday night at Bobcat Stadium/Sim Cooley Field.

The victory lifts Jones to 4-0 overall and 2-0 in the MACCC. East Central drops to 0-4 and 0-2.

The Bobcats were ahead 17-14 in the middle of the fourth quarter when they faced a fourth and 1 at their own 37-yard line. Jones went for it and was stopped for no gain. The Warriors then attempted a first down pass, but DK Metcalf (Greenville Christian) came up with a huge interception at the Bobcat 26.

Jones could not pick up a first down and punted the ball away and ECCC began a drive at its own 42 with 4:56 remaining. The Warriors would end up facing a fourth and 1 at the Bobcat 49. ECCC elected to punt the ball away instead of trying for the first down.

The Bobcats started its final drive at its own 30. Jones would face a third and 20 at its own 44 with 2:03 remaining after the Warriors called their final timeout. The Bobcats gave the ball to Trent Howell (George County) who picked up 29 yards for the first down and sealed the win.

Jones began the game in excellent shape. On its opening possession, the Bobcats went 76 yards in nine plays for a score. At the ECCC 20, Robert Henry (Lumberton) took a handoff and ran 14 yards before fumbling. But wide receiver Tavion Smith (Oak Grove) picked up the ball and ran it in from six yards out for the touchdown. Yohan Thompson (Adams County Christian School) kicked the extra point and Jones led 7-0 with 8:44 left in the first quarter.

The Bobcats expanded the lead to 10-0 on a 43-yard field goal by Thompson with 1:33 left in the second quarter. But East Central would drive 54 yards in three plays after the ensuing kickoff. Quarterback Gabriel Larry found Corey Goldwire for a 43-yard touchdown pass with just 43 seconds left in the first half. Brandon Gilliam’s extra point made it 10-7 going into intermission.

Jones would extend the lead back to 10 when quarterback Alan Follis (West Jones) connected with Ashton Nickelberry (Brandon) for a 25-yard touchdown pass to end a 44-yard, three-play drive. Thompson’s PAT made it 17-7 with 5:56 remaining in the third quarter.

East Central would then put together a 64-yard, 13-play drive to come within a field goal. Facing a fourth and goal at the Jones’ 1, Larry hit Goldwire on a 1-yard shovel pass for a touchdown. Gilliam’s extra point made it 17-14 with 13:11 remaining.

Individually, Henry had another big game, rushing 24 times for 147 yards. He now has 650 yards through four games, averaging 162.5 yards per game.

Follis completed 12-of-18 passes for 149 yards and a touchdown. Nickelberry had three catches for 66 yards and a score and Qua Sanders (West Lowndes) had three receptions for 33 yards.

Defensively, linebacker Jonathan Wiltz (Columbia) led the way with nine tackles. Josh Belk (Fort Lawn, South Carolina) and Javarian Jenkins (Oak Grove) each had six tackles and Raymond Collins (Harrison Central) had five tackles, two TFLs and 1.5 sacks. Travor Randle (Greenwood) also had two sacks.

As a team, Jones had 19 first downs, 212 yards rushing, 161 yards passing and 373 yards of total offense. ECCC had nine first downs, 115 yards rushing, 99 yards passing and 214 yards of total offense. The Bobcats forced 12 East Central punts.

Jones goes on the road to meet Hinds in a 6:30 p.m. kickoff on Sept. 29. The game will air on JCJC.TV, WLAU-FM, 99.3, and

East Central hosts Southwest on Sept. 29.

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