Demopolis High finishes season 10-0 with win over Jackson Aggies
Only the Demopolis High School Tigers themselves could get in the way of defeating the Jackson High Aggies Friday night and going undefeated 10-0 for the regular season.
The referees did their best to cloud the issue with a rain of yellow flag throughout the game. The final score was 48-7, but like a restrictor plate on a NASCAR automobile, the yellow flags slowed what could have been a season-ending blowout for Demopolis.
The Tigers got things going when Dontrell Miller picked off an Aggie pass on the first drive of the game and ran it back 48 yards for a touchdown. The extra point was good, and with 9:56 left in the first, Demopolis led by 7.
The one treat for Jackson on a Halloween night was the next play. Tarique Ridgeway ran the Tiger kickoff all the way back, 80 yards for a TD. An extra point quickly tied the game.
Rod "Rock" Jones then began a work-horse effort for the Tigers as Demopolis &045; despite the penalties &045; helping push the Tigers deep into Aggie territory. Devin Goodwin would then hit Chad Schroeder
37 yards for a touchdown.
The extra point was good, and with 7:55 left in the first, Demopolis led 14-7 and Jackson was in for a long night.
After both teams stalled on their next possessions, Dontrell Miller put the Tigers in good position with a punt return across mid-field. A pass from Goodwin to Schroeder got the ball to the nine yard line, and Dustin Gracie scored on a five-yard TD run with 55.1 seconds left in the first. The extra point was good, giving the Tigers a 21-7 lead.
On Jackson’s next series, the Aggies fumbled near mid-field. But what seemed like good fortune for DHS actually led to a devastating injury for the Tigers.
On a run play through the middle of the Jackson defense, Gracie hit the ground in pain. After being helped off the field, Gracie did not return. Coaches said he injured his ribs and were not sure of his status for the first round of the playoffs next week.
Jones stepped in and moved the ball deeper into Jackson territory, setting up a 23-yard touchdown pass from Goodwin to Colby Roberts with 9:10 left in the second. The extra point was good, and the score was 28-7 over the Aggies.
Jackson couldn’t move the ball, and a poor punt gave Demopolis the ball a midfield. Goodwin passed to Michael Lee to reach the Aggie 41-yard line and threw a fine pass to Roberts at the 24-yard line. Chris Cupit would run to the five-yard line, and Jones scored the two-yard TD with 4:26 left in the first half.
The extra point made the score 35-7.
The Tigers would end a great first half on their next possession as two runs by Jones got the ball to the Jackson 18-yard line. A pass to Roberts put DHS on the 10-yard line, and Jonathan Sommers ran in 10 yards for the TD with 31 seconds left.
The extra point was blocked this time, and the halftime score was 41-7.
The final score of the game would come after much of the third quarter was filled with yellow penalty flags. Rod Jones took the ball on the first play of a DHS drive at the end of the third and ran 61 yards for a TD. The extra point was good, and the final score proved to be 48-7.
Not only did the Aggies have to chase Jones Friday night; one referee said "I haven’t run this much this year."
Despite the overwhelming victory over Jackson and the undefeated season, injuries are a concern. Bart Pettus is still nursing a knee injury along with Gracie being hurt Friday night. The Tigers will need both in the playoffs.
Demopolis will host Choctaw County for the second time this year Friday in the first round of the playoffs in Memorial Stadium. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.