Maroon Tide Smokes Harrison Central 45-18

by Carey Meitzler

The Picayune Maroon Tide's home opener drew a large turnout from the Maroon Tide Nation and the Nation went home in good

spirits as their team defeated the Harrison Red Rebels 45-18.  The beginning was somewhat auspicious for Picayune, but once

they found their gear, the Maroon Tide dominated in rolling up 409 yards of total offense.

Harrison Central, utilizing a four wide, no huddle offense, moved the ball to the Tide 38 yard line and consumed nearly eight minutes

off the clock before Picayune's defense stiffened and forced a punt that rolled dead at the Tide 10 yard line.

Behind the running of  Drew Cole, Albert Richard, and Dale Meitzler, Picayune moved the ball to the Harrison Central 22 yard line

and settled for a Irving Gonzalez 37 yard field goal with 9:04 left in the second period. 

Photo courtesy of John Young

 

Dale Meitzler (40) fights for yards as Jon Billups (79), James Brady (77), and Huey Stockstill (63) pave the way.

Leading 3-0, Picayune forced another Red Rebel punt from deep in their own territory and set up shop at the Harrison Central

40 yard line.  Albert Richard scored from 5 yards out on the sixth play of the drive and Gonzalez's point after touchdown (PAT)

put Picayune up 10-0 with 4:29 left on the clock.

Harrison Central answered with 9 play 80 drive getting a touchdown on a 7 yard pass from Kendal Barrow to Michael Darby to

cut the lead to 10-6 with 1:04 left before the half.  The PAT was wide right.

The ensuing kickoff was fielded by Albert Richard near the right sideline and he inadvertently stepped out at the 5 yard line. 

On first down, Micah Hickman dropped into his end zone and hit a streaking Justin Griffith in stride at his own 45 yard line

and Griffith ran untouched for a 95 yard touchdown.  Gonzalez added the PAT for a 17-6 halftime lead.

Photo courtesy of John Young

 

Justin Griffith (7) looks in Micah Hickman's pass on his way to a 95 yard touchdown.

Picayune's next score was setup when Jake Martinez jarred the ball loose from a Red Rebel runner and Dale Meitzler jumped on

the fumble at the Red Rebel 48 yard line.   On third down, Albert Richard scampered 42 yards for the touchdown and Gonzalez

added the PAT for a 24-6 margin with 6:07 to go in the third quarter.

Harrison Central answered with a 9 play 67 yard drive capped off on a 14 yard run by Kendal Barrow to cut the lead to 24-12

with 2:38 left in the third quarter. The two point conversion failed.

Richard scored again, this time on a 24 yard touchdown run on the Tide's next possession at the 11:24 mark of the fourth quarter.

He completed his four touchdown performance with a magnificent spinning, cutting run from 11 yards out with 4:14 to play.

Photo courtesy of John Young

Albert Richard on his way to one of his four touchdowns for the Maroon Tide.

Sophomore Gabe Hinojosa closed out the scoring for Picayune with a 5 yard touchdown run with 2:43 to play.

Harrison Central scored on the last play of the game on a 11 yard pass from Chris Stephenson to Darius Bates to make the final

45-18. 

Richard carried 16 times for 135 yards and four touchdowns.  Meitzler finished with 56 yards on 11 rushes.  Drew Cole had 7 totes

for 44 yards.  Picayune rushed 39 times for 264 yards and Hickman completed 3 of 5 passes for 145 yards including the 95 yard

touchdown to Griffith.

Picayune (2-0) travels to Gulfport next week while Harrison Central (0-2) will host Hattiesburg.