November 4, 2011

Maroon Tide downs West Harrison 45-20

by Carey Meitzler

Gulfport--Picayune rolled to a 45-20 win over the West Harrison Hurricanes to complete the regular season

portion of their schedule with an impressive 9-2 record.  The Maroon Tide claimed the Region 4-5A title with

a 6-1 record and will host McComb in the first round of the Class 5A South playoffs next Friday.

The Maroon Tide scored on the first possession of the game with 7 play 79 yard drive with junior fullback

Desmond Taylor slashing in from 22 yards out for the touchdown.  Dalton O'Meara's point after made 7-0

with 8:46 to play in the quarter.

The Hurricanes produced two first downs before punting the ball away to Picayune with the ball being downed at

inside the Maroon Tide 1 yard line. On second down, junior quarterback Ben Hickman completed a pass to

Daveon Greene, but Greene was stripped of the ball and Ronnie Davis scooped up the fumble and scored for

West Harrison from 10 yards out.  Brennan Kim's extra point tied the game at 7-7 with 3:19 left.

After the ensuing kickoff, the Maroon Tide's drive stalled at the Hurricane 11 yard line and Picayune settled for

a 28 yard field goal from Dalton O'Meara with :47 left in the first quarter.

Picayune took advantage of a West Harrison fumble to get their next points when Nolan Fletcher pounced on the

ball at the West Harrison 23. On the first play after the recovery, Hickman connected on a touchdown pass to

wide receiver Justin Mark on a fade route in the left corner of the end zone.  O'Meara converted the point after

for a 17-7 lead with 4:46 left in the half.

Once again, Picayune's defense got the ball back on a fumble when Semaj Branch corralled the loose ball at

the West Harrison 40.  Five plays later, Greene scored on a 15 yard reverse and O'Meara punched the extra

point through the uprights giving Picayune a 24-7 lead with 1:06 left in the half.

In the third quarter, Picayune added two more scores to extend their lead.  The first score came on a 57 yard

pass from Hickman to Mark and the second score was 38 yard sprint from senior tailback Dereonte Magee.

O'Meara kicked both extra points.

With 9:34 left in the game, Hickman connected with Greene on a 53 yard touchdown pass and Tyler Mark kicked

the extra point for a 45-7 lead.

Picayune played the rest of the game with reserves and West Harrison scored twice with Davis running in from

36 yards and Reggie Walden scoring from 1 yard on the last play of the game.

Magee tallied 114 yards on 15 carries while Taylor finished with 59 yards on 8 rushes.

Hickman completed 5 of 7 passes for 138 yards with three touchdowns.