NHS tops Crystal Springs in jamboree
NATCHEZ — Natchez High School football team tried to scrape off a little rust Friday night as they got a preseason victory in a 19-6 contest against Crystal Springs in their jamboree.
The Natchez High jamboree consisted of two 12-minute quarters, excluding special teams.
Penalties slowed the Bulldogs down several times during the first quarter of the scrimmage. It first proved to be an issue when quarterback Sidney Davis’ 10-yard touchdown rush was brought back because of a holding call. The Bulldogs failed to shake off the penalty as the Tigers took over on downs.
Natchez head coach Lance Reed said the multiple penalties are something on which he and his coaching staff must focus.
“We have to get better at it,” Reed said. “That’s why we play a jamboree game, to get better at it.”
Penalties put them in tough positions on the defensive side of the ball as well. Crystal Springs took over their offense on their 5-yard line, and back-to-back offside penalties on the Bulldogs pushed Crystal Springs up to the 15-yard line. The second of those penalties came on a fourth-and-inches play. Despite the penalties, the Tigers were still unable to score.
Natchez finally kicked into gear in their second possession, scoring on a two-play drive that lasted 17 seconds.
Davis completed a 40-yard pass to Lee Jackson, and on the next play, Davis rushed 10 yards on a quarterback sneak to score Natchez’s first touchdown. The extra point was no good.
Reed said Jackson played a good all-around game for the Bulldogs Friday.
“(Jackson) plays both ways, and he made plays on both sides of the ball,” he said. “That’s what we expect out of him.”
The Bulldogs tightened up their defense and didn’t allow a first down on Crystal Springs’ next possession.
Natchez’s second touchdown came in a connection between Davis and Earon Brown.
John Ferguson got Natchez down to the 2-yard line on a 15-yard rush before Davis found Brown to extend their lead 12-0. This time, Jarell Morris made the extra point, giving the Bulldogs a 13-point lead.
The Tigers found an offensive spark after three possessions in the second quarter when quarterback Standrique Wilson rushed 3 yards for their only score of the game.
Natchez scored one more time when Ferguson rushed 5 yards for the touchdown with three seconds left, ending the game 19-6.
Davis played his first game at the quarterback position, and Reed said he is content with the progress he has made so far.
“He made some good decisions,” Reed said. “He’s where we thought he would be at this point. We’re going to continue to utilize his strengths and keep the offense moving.”
Reed said he’s happy his team finally got to put the pads on and play under Friday night lights, but the scrimmage showed him exactly where his team is at this stage.
“We’re rusty but it’s good to compete against another team,” Reed said. “Some things went well but we have to go and observe film and get ready for a very good Wilkinson County team next week.”
The Bulldogs will play at Wilkinson County High School at 7 p.m. Friday.