Late run not enough for Ferriday

Published 12:54 am Saturday, October 27, 2012

Ferriday High School’s Allen Cummings maintains possession as he is tackled by Sterlington High School’s Quenterrius Gray during Friday’s game. Ferriday fell to Sterlington, 49-34. (Lauren Wood \ The Natchez Democrat)

FERRIDAY — The Ferriday High School football team scored 26 second-half points Friday night, but the hole was so deep that the late run only made the score more respectable.

Sterlington High School led 42-8 late in the third quarter before the Trojans started finding some success on offense. But Sterlington had little trouble holding on for a 49-34 victory.

“We tried to challenge the kids at halftime, but they came out and hit on some big plays,” Ferriday head coach Cleothis Cummings said. “You take those away and it was an 8-6 game for a while. But I am proud of our kids. They were fighters and didn’t give up.”

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Ferriday had the first score of the game after a fumbled punt set it up inside Sterlington territory. Senior running back Jarvis Brooks capped off the short drive with a 1-yard touchdown run and then scored the two-point conversion to give the Trojans the lead.

But Sterlington answered Ferriday’s touchdown early and often. Less than two minutes after the Ferriday score, Sterlington’s Austin Haman found the end zone on a 3-yard run. The two-point conversion failed, and Ferriday still led 8-6 at the end of the first quarter.

Haman found the end zone again midway through the second quarter. Sterlington’s Jaylon Wade then scored on a 7-yard run, and quarterback Devon Murphy connected with Cody McGuire for a 22-yard touchdown pass to give Sterlington a 27-8 lead at halftime.

Haman finished the game with 135 yards, and Wade finished with 176 yards on the ground. Sterlington rushed for 394 yards in the contest.

The Panthers’ onslaught continued in the third quarter when Wade found the end zone on a 4-yard run. Sterlington got a safety on Ferriday’s next possession, and Murphy then connected with Quenterrius Gray on a 21-yard touchdown to give Sterlington a 42-8 lead.

But the Trojans rallied late in the third quarter, and Cummings said he was proud of the way his team did not quit.

“It was an example of what we can do when we put our mind to it,” he said. “We played well (at the end) of the game.”

Trey Hall started the Ferriday comeback with a 23-yard touchdown run. Hall finished the game with 44 yards rushing, 40 yards receiving and 43 yards passing.

Brooks got back into the act with a 2-yard touchdown run, and a two-point conversion pass from Ronald Davis to Allen Cummings made the score 42-22.

The Trojans special teams got into the act on Sterlington’s next possession when Shannon Morales picked up a blocked field goal and returned it 82 yards for a score.

The Trojans had a chance to get the ball back with three minutes left to go, but Wade turned a third-and-short situation into an 82-yard touchdown run to give the Panthers a 49-29 lead and put the game away for good.

Ferriday’s final score came just 30 seconds later when Adrian Wiggins caught a 55-yard touchdown pass from Morales.

Cummings said the loss was especially hard on his first senior class as a head coach in its final home game of the season.

“These guys were a unique group,” Cummings said. “They didn’t have a lot of experience, but they played together and stayed united.”

Ferriday (1-8, 0-4) will travel to Lakeside High School for the final game of the season next week.