Magee upsets Jefferson County

Published 11:07 pm Friday, November 11, 2022

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MAGEE — Jefferson County High School junior quarterback Jabari Watson had an up-and-down performance in the Tigers’ 36-26 loss on the road to the Magee High School Trojans last Friday night in the second round of the 2022 MHSAA Class 3A South State Playoffs.

Watson threw four second-half touchdown passes. That was the good. Watson also turned the ball over twice in the first half, one of which turned into a pick-six by Magee sophomore middle linebacker Delarious Hayes midway through the second quarter. That was the bad.

“Pretty much we fell down 21 points at halftime. We had a big hole we had to dig out of,” Tigers head coach Roderick Holmes said. “Two turnovers in the second quarter by our quarterback gave them excellent field position.”

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Region 6-3A No. 3 seed Magee went up 7-0 in the first quarter before the Trojans took advantage of Watson’s miscues. His fumble that was recovered by Magee resulted in a rushing touchdown by Kendal Middleton. Gavyn Chafin’s third extra point of the first half gave them a 21-0 lead at the half.

“They did what we saw them do in film. It wasn’t nothing they did differently,” Holmes said. “They put together an unbalanced package they did with their running quarterback. When we did stop that, they did their normal offense.

Watson’s first two touchdown passes of the second half occurred in the third quarter, which cut the Trojans’ lead to 21-14. But a touchdown pass from Tristan Newsome to DaQuon Levy late in the quarter gave them a 28-14 advantage.

Magee’s defense once again stepped up as it recorded a safety with nearly 7:00 remaining in the fourth quarter to give the Trojans a 30-14 lead.

And while Watson threw two TD passes in the fourth quarter, a short touchdown run by Newsome was sandwiched in between and that gave the Trojans a 36-20 lead with nearly two minutes left.

“Finally put some offense together in the third and fourth quarters. But we still fell short,” Holmes said. “We thought we had more in us. We fell short of our goal and that’s to win a state championship.”

Magee (8-3) will take on Hazlehurst High School in the third round of the Class 3A South State Playoffs. The Indians took care of Jefferson Davis County High School 32-13 last Friday night.

Jefferson County, the Region 7-3A No. 1 seed, finished its season with an 8-3 overall record.