Flat Bulldogs hurt by lackluster offense

Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 14, 2000

Wayne County quarterback Akeem Lofton threw for four touchdowns and ran for another as the 11th-ranked War Eagles cruised to a 61-24 Division 6-5A win over the Natchez High Bulldogs Friday night at Natchez High Stadium.

Wayne County (7-1, 4-0) had 329 of its 415 yards on the ground, led by Michael McGlaughin, who had seven carries for 146 yards and two touchdowns.

&uot;I thought we came out ready to play and we played hard,&uot; said Wayne County head coach Bobby Hall. &uot;This is the first time we’ve started 7-1.&uot;

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Lofton started the War Eagles’ scoring spree with a three-yard TD run, and then threw a 10-yard TD pass to Rod Brown for a 12-0 lead after one quarter of play.

&uot;We came out and we weren’t able to move the ball and we weren’t able to stop them,&uot; said Natchez head coach Elbert &uot;Mo&uot; Lyles. &uot;We didn’t execute at all. We came out flat and it hurt us.&uot;

Wayne County then exploded for 28 second-quarter points.

McLaughlin scored on a five-yard run and Lofton threw touchdown passes of 27 and 12 yards to Brown and 16 yards to Lance Gandy for a 40-0 halftime lead.

&uot;Lofton had a great game,&uot; Hall said.

&uot;We got ourselves in a hole so bad that we couldn’t get out of it,&uot; Lyles said.

Thomas Payton then took the opening kickoff of the second half 81 yards for a touchdown.

Natchez (2-6, 1-3) took advantage of three Wayne County turnovers and scored on a five-yard run by Mack Thomas, a 47-yard pass from Donald Butler to Edwin Skipper and a 15-yard run by Butler to trail 47-18. But the rally ended when McLaughin scored on a 75-yard run and Joe Miller recovered a Natchez fumble and returned it 54 yards for a touchdown for a 61-18 lead.

Natchez got a 9-yard touchdown run from Roderick Allen with 1:55 remaining for the final score.

Natchez hosts Meridian next Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Wayne County hosts 3rd-ranked Brandon.