Tyler Nichols rushed for two touchdowns – including the game-winning 47-yard TD run in the fourth quarter – to lift the Starkville High School football team, ranked fourth in the AP Mississippi Top 10, to a come-from-behind 28-21 win over Tupelo on Friday night in Tupelo.
Starkville (7-0) improved to 3-0 and is tied for first place in Class 6A, Region 1 with Oxford (5-2). Tupelo fell to 5-2, 1-2 in the region.
When Tupelo quarterback Jeremiah harrell hit a wide-open Qua Middlebrooks for a 33-yard touchdown pass during the second quarter, the Golden Wave led 14-0. But Starkville rallied, finally tying the score on Trey Petty’s 24-yard TD pass to Braylon Burnside to make it 21-21 in the third.
The Yellow Jackets had a decisive advantage in total offense, outgaining the Golden Wave 392-274, with the edge almost evenly split between rushing yards (262-204) and passing yards (130-70).
Next up for the Yellow Jackets is a visit Friday to Jackson to take on Murrah (1-6, 0-3 6A-1) before a key battle against Oxford on Oct. 22 in Starkville.
Heritage Academy 35, Magnolia Heights 9: Mack Howard threw five touchdown passes as the Patriots remained undefeated with a victory in Senatobia.
Howard hit Trey Naugher for scoring plays of 18 and 27 yards as Heritage Academy, ranked third among the state’s private schools, improved to 9-0, 4-0 in MAIS Class 5A, District 1. The Chiefs fell to 3-5 and 1-3.
The Patriots will go outside the district Friday night when they welcome Leake Academy (7-1) to Columbus.
New Hope 38, Greenville 0: The Trojans snapped a two-game losing streak, won their first district game and posted their third shutout of the season with their home victory over the Hornets.
New Hope now has won three games by an average of 32 points and lost two games without scoring a point.
The Trojans face another stiff test Friday when they travel to Oxford to face Lafayette (5-2, 2-1).
Starkville Academy 26, Pillow Academy 22: Randall Futral tossed touchdown passes to Drew Williams and Brady Johnson and ran for another score to lead the Volunteers over the Mustangs.
Dylan Miller kicked two field goals as the Vols (5-3, 2-1 MAIS 5A-1) remained tied for second in the district with Bayou Academy, a team they will face this Friday night in Cleveland.
Bo Carter and Charlie Nicholas each intercepted passes for the SA defense, which “played really hard and gave the offense lots of chances to get in the end zone,” Vols coach Chase Nicholson said.
West Point 48, Cleveland Central 14: The Green Wave took over sole possession of first place in Class 5A-1 with a convincing victory over the Wolves.
West Point (4-2, 3-0) put together its highest scoring output of the season while pinning the first region loss on Cleveland Central (3-3, 2-1). The Green Wave, ranked No. 6 in the AP Mississippi Top 10 and No. 1 in Class 5A, have yet to lose on the field this season.
Next up for West Point is a Friday night visit to Lake Cormorant (4-3, 2-1), a team which lost 25-14 to Cleveland Central 10 days ago.
Carroll Academy 40, Oak Hill Academy 7: The visiting Raiders scored in the fourth quarter to avert the shutout in Carrollton.
The Rebels snapped a three-game skid with the win, while the Raiders lost for the second consecutive week after posting back-to-back wins.
Oak Hill (3-5) will continue playing outside MAIS Class 4A-1 on Friday night when they welcome Central Holmes Christian (3-5) to West Point.
Manchester Academy 46, Columbus Christian 12: The Rams lost their fifth consecutive district game, falling behind 46-0 against the district leaders before scoring twice in the fourth quarter.
Jonah Harrison put CCA on the board with a 43-yard touchdown run, and Drake Shaw hit Beau Kemp for a 22-yard score.
Shaw finished 7 of 17 for 45 yards passing, while Kemp rushed for 41 yards. Shaw made 5 tackles, while McCory Humphries and Lahndon Townley each had 3.5.
The Mavericks improved to 7-1, 4-0 in MAIS Class 2A-1, while the Rams are 2-6 and 0-5. Columbus Christian will be off this week before wrapping up its season at home against North Sunflower (5-3, 2-2).
Cornerstone Christian 49, Victory Christian 14: Tyshon Rogers threw for one score and rushed for another, but the Eagles fell to 1-4.
Rogers hit Camron Henley for a 41-yard touchdown, ran 4 yards for a touchdown and also passed to Landon Barksdale for a 2-point conversion for Victory Christian.
Henley led the VCA defense with 9 tackles and had an interception, while Kayden Barksdale made 7 tackles.
Cornerstone Christian is 4-2, 3-2 in the CFA.