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NHS falls in region

NATCHEZ — Moving the ball wasn’t the problem for Natchez High School — it was punching it into the end zone.

Because of that, the Bulldogs fell to 3-2 in regional play against conference opponent Hattiesburg High School 35-14 Friday night.

“Obviously, we were disappointed in the outcome,” Reed said. “It was just one of those things where we weren’t effective in a lot of situations, and we just have to go back and get that fixed.”

After falling behind 7-0 in the first quarter, the Bulldogs’ first touchdown came with 9:11 in the second quarter on a 6-yard catch by Tony Kaho from Derrian Johnson. The PAT kick by Herbert Steadman was good.

But Hattiesburg scored 14 points in the second to take a 21-7 lead into the half. The Tigers tacked on seven more points in the third quarter, and added seven more points in the fourth quarter.

Natchez High School’s Malik Byrd returns the opening kickoff past Hattiesburg High School’s Ronald Brown during Friday night’s game. Natchez lost 14-35. (Rod Guajardo \ The Natchez Democrat)

NHS finally got on the board again with four minutes remaining in the game. Sidney Davis caught a 5-yard pass from Anthony Robinson to cut Hattiesburg’s lead to 35-14.

But despite 328 yards on offense, the Bulldogs’ had just three trips to the red zone, Reed said.

“Our red zone play wasn’t as good as we expected,” he said. “We just didn’t make plays down there.”

Robinson finished 19 of 33 in passing with 197 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions. Davis had 100 yards rushing, and Johnson finished with 80 yards rushing.

On defense, the Bulldogs were led by Charles Bates, who had 15 tackles, one tackle for loss and two forced fumbles. Evin Hunt tallied 12 tackles.

The loss dropped the Bulldogs to 6-3 overall, but NHS still has a chance to make the playoffs.

“If we can figure out a way to rebound and find a way to come back and stay in that race, we do have the opportunity (to make the postseason),” Reed said. “If we don’t improve, we won’t be sitting pretty at all.”