DHS tramples Dallas Co. 55-6

Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 20, 2007

DEMOPOLIS &8212; Turnovers plagued the visiting Dallas County Hornets, with four fumbles and two interceptions leading to Tiger touchdowns in a 55-6 Homecoming romp.

While the Tiger defense gave up 142 passing yards, they held the Hornet running game to only 42 yards and caused six turnovers.

Junior quarterback Rick Boone and Freshman running back DeMarcus James led the offense in making something out of turnovers. Boone rushed for two touchdowns and passed for two more. James led the Tigers in rushing with 115 yards on nine carries.

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Tiger head coach Tom Causey said he was not as interested in the score as he was the level of play from his team.

While he praised his squad for the win, he pointed to poor tackling and costly penalties that need to be corrected before next week.

Turnovers also led to more than 60 yards of offense being called back.

Still, it was hard denying the Tigers their dominant effort on the evening, even after a slow start.

It wasn&8217;t until the middle of the second quarter before the Tigers started to pull away. Their opening drive fizzled when the Hornets sacked quarterback Rick Boone on the Tiger 28-yard line on fourth and 14.

But the Tiger defense made up for it on the Hornet&8217;s first offensive play of the game. Sophomore Jeremy Wallaced picked off Dallas County quarterback Braxton&8217;s pass and returned it 35 yards for a touchdown with just over eight minutes left in the first quarter.

On their next possession, the Hornets turned the ball over to the Tigers on a bad snap to punter Dennis Stone, who recovered the ball on their 5-yard line. Boone punched the ball in from two yards out. After a missed extra point, the Tigers led 13-6 with 3:41 left in the first quarter.

Less than a minute into the second quarter, it looked like the Hornets would make a game of it when Andrew Blackmon recovered a fumble by Boone and returning it to the Tiger 10-yard line. Two plays later, Braxton hit Marcus Wills for the touchdown. A missed extra point would leave the game at 13-6.

Two plays into their next drive, the Tigers looked as if they would continue their woes when Boone fumbled a second time, turning the ball over to the Hornets. But Dallas County would three-and-out.

The Tigers answered with a 67-yard drive, led by James and Boone. James found 21 yards on an option, with the Hornets giving them five more on an unintentional face mask penalty.

Boone followed behind James with his best effort of the night, keeping on an option, breaking two tackles and carrying one defender into the end zone with him to cap off a 32-yard touchdown run.

Shantrell Braxton took the two-point conversion into the end zone, and the Tigers extended their led to 21-6.

From that point on, it became monotonous: Hornets turn it over; Tigers find pay dirt.

Tyler McAlpine started off the spectacle when he intercepted a Braxton pass with 4:39 left in the second quarter. McAlpine returned the interception 31 yards for a touchdown.

Next, Michael Davis &8212; who led the defense with five solo tackles and two assists &8212; recovered a fumble on the Hornets&8217; 49-yard line. The Tigers needed only one play to get into the end zone, this time with Boone hitting Larry Cobb down the right sideline.

The next Hornet drive ended in similar fashion. The Tigers recovered a Braxton fumble, and Boone hooked up with a receiver for a touchdown. This time it was Brian Taylor over the middle from 46 yards out.

After trailing 42-6 at halftime, the Hornets did nothing to improve their chances of a comeback in the second.

Their opening drive ended after an incomplete pass on fourth and goal from the 14-yard line. The Tigers slowed the pace of the game, eating up six minutes of the third quarter as they drove 86 yards for a touchdown. Braxton led the way, rushing for 59 yards on the series, including a 17-yard push off the right side to find the end zone.

The extra point fell short, and the Tigers led 48-6.

The Tigers ended their domination of Dallas County half way through the fourth quarter. A Carl Johnson fumble recovery set up a 37-yard touchdown run by James.

The Tigers racked up 277 rushing yard on 44 carries. They amassed 101 passing yards, connecting on three of their six attempts.