Five Takeaways from Week 3

Starkville running back Amariyon Howard last season against Brandon. (Photo by Chris Brooks)

Down goes No. 1

Starkville held off previous No. 1 West Point 40-28 at Yellowjacket Stadium on Friday night in a statement game between the state’s top two teams.

Jakobe Pate scored on an 81-yard touchdown run on the second play of the game to give West Point an early 7-0 lead. After that the Yellowjackets never trailed.

Florida State quarterback commit Luke Altmyer scored on a 74-yard touchdown run, while Amariyon Howard followed with an 8-yard run to give Starkville a 13-7 lead after the first quarter. Howard is committed to Mississippi State.

Altmyer threw two touchdown passes in the second quarter to give Starkville a 26-7 lead at halftime.

In the third quarter after Pate scored on a 6-yard run for West Point to cut the lead to 26-14, Howard scored on an 85-yard run to extend the Yellowjacket lead to 33-14 with 9:12 left in the third.

West Point got two rushing touchdowns from Cameron Young and Montavious Edwards to cut the Starkville lead to 33-28 with 4:45 left in the fourth quarter.

West Point would get the ball with just over a minute to go in the game, but Starkville’s Ja’carius Hendricks would pick up a fumble and score from 15 yards out with 57 seconds left to seal the win for Starkville (1-0).

Altmyer finished the game with 295 yards passing with two touchdowns and the rushing touchdown to lead Starkville. Howard finished with 103 yards with two touchdowns for the Yellowjackets.

Young had 172 yards rushing with a touchdown to lead West Point, while Pate added 129 yards with two touchdowns for the Green Wave (0-1).


Hattiesburg reclaims Little Brown Jug.

One of the biggest surprises to open the MHSAA season came in one of the state’s biggest rivalry games.

Hattiesburg forced eight turnovers that led to a 26-12 win over previously No. 9 Laurel in the 99th annual Battle for the Little Brown Jug.

The Tiger defense intercepted Laurel quarterback Dexter Scott five times and would also recover two fumbles and on special teams they would recover a failed squib kick.

Hattiesburg defensive back Walt Thompson would have three of those five interceptions. Makel Jones had a interception return for a touchdown to seal the win for the Tigers.

Quarterback Jermaine Powell would throw two touchdown passes to lead the Hattiesburg (1-0).


Pontotoc rallies in OT

Pontotoc trailed 27-7 at halftime but used a big second half surge to rally past New Albany 38-35 in overtime.

The Bulldogs would fumble the opening second half kickoff and Pontotoc’s Jemarkus Whitfield would score on a 4-yard run to cut the New Albany lead to 27-14.

After New Albany was forced to punt Whitfield would score again on a 38-yard run to make it 27-21 with 6:17 left in the third quarter.

Pontotoc would take a 28-27 lead on an 80-yard punt return for a touchdown by Marty Reel with just under nine minutes left in the fourth quarter.

The Warriors extended their lead to 35-27 on a Whitfield 29-yard run with 5:35 left.

New Albany would tie the game at 35 on a C.J. Hill 21-yard run and successful two-point conversion with 4:01 left in the fourth quarter.

In overtime New Albany would fumble on their first play and the Pontotoc’s Ashton Maffett would hit the game-winning 23-yard field goal to win it for the Warriors.


Clinton routes Brandon

In one of the most interesting games of Week three, it was Clinton at Brandon, the Jackson metro area’s oldest rivalry.

This one belonged to the Arrows.

Clinton would feast on Brandon mistakes as the Arrows raced past the Bulldogs 30-7 at Bulldog Stadium in the 76th all-time meeting between the two schools.

The road team has now won six straight in the series.

All the scoring came in the first half.

First score came on a 44-yard pass from Caleb Miller to Carsson DeYoung with 4:07 left in the first quarter.

After the first Brandon fumble on an option pitch, Miller would score on a 2-yard run to extend the Clinton lead to 14-0.

To begin the second quarter the Arrows would score two touchdowns in a one minute and 21 second span.

The first score came on a 11-yard pass from Miller to Michael Hughes with 11:07 to extend the lead to 20-0.

After Brandon fumbled the ensuing kickoff, Montavious Warren scored on a 1-yard run to make it 27-0 with 9:40 left in the first half.

Price Nixon would connect on a 41-yard field goal with 25 seconds left to give the Arrows the 30-7 lead before halftime.

Miller had 74 yards passing with two touchdowns and a rushing touchdown to lead Clinton (1-0). The Arrow defense held Brandon to just 162 yards of total offense, including just 11 yards passing.

Brandon’s only touchdown was a 74-yard run by Ozarrio Smith in the second quarter.



Like last year the MAIS has jumped out to the lead over MHSAA schools in the annual games between the two associations.

In Week 3, MAIS schools went 3-1 against schools from the MHSAA.

Lee Academy shutout Strayhorn 19-0; Starkville Academy ran past Noxapater 52-26; Marshall Academy shutout Myrtle 14-0. The only win for a MHSAA school was Byers defeating Rossville Christian (Tenn.) 28-14.

There are four games in Week 4 between schools from the MHSAA and MAIS. Heritage Academy at Caledonia; NE Lauderdale at Jackson Academy; PCS at Sumrall and Strayhorn at North Delta.