Kossuth and Walnut were the lone teams from the Daily Corinthian coverage area to begin their playoff quests Friday.
The Aggies traveled to Winona, the No. 1 seed from Region 3-3A, while the Wildcats hosted Region 3-2A No. 3 seed MS Palmer at home “between the hedges.”
Walnut 48 MS Palmer 32
Walnut — It was all TJ Luellen in the first half before TJ Colom II took control in the second as the “TJ’s” combined for over 330 yards rushing and four touchdowns as the Wildcats defeated MS Palmer in a first round MHSAA 2A playoff game.
The win pushes Walnut to 8-2 and into a second round contest next Friday at East Webster with kickoff set for 7 p.m.
Luellen finished his night at halftime with 111 yards and two TD’s while Colom II ran wild in the second half for 216 yards and a pair of scores while also intercepting a Palmer pass at the goal line with under a minute left in the game to seal the deal.
Walnut quarterback Cade Hunt had a solid game completing 6-9 for 85 yards and two touchdowns, both to Eli Dollar. The scoring receptions were reportedly the first of Dollar’s high school career.
Walnut had easily one of it’s best offensive performances of the season, although they allowed Dragons running back Marvin Sanders Jr. to pile up substantial yardage on the ground.
The ‘Cats will face the Wolverines for the first time since dropping a 42-8 first round playoff decision in Maben in 2015. Walnut has not advanced past the second round of the playoffs since 2008 when they fell to Eupora.
Wildcat head coach John Meeks was not available for comment following the contest.
Winona 48 Kossuth 33
Winona — The Aggies made it interesting for a half before succumbing to the potent Tigers offense as Winona rolled to a 48-33 win in a first round MHSAA 3A playoff game.
The loss ends Kossuth’s season at 3-7.
Zamarius Alexander kept KHS close early on with 155 yards and two touchdowns rushing in the first half as the home team had a hard time corralling the senior running back. Alexander finished the game with 226 yards and the two first half scores.
The Aggies racked up 300 rushing yards on the Tigers defense as Winona countered with 354 yards on the ground. Kossuth quarterback Brock Seago was 7-13 through the air for 67 yards and a touchdown to Clayton Jacobs. Backup QB Hunrter Bright also saw action, completing 2-2 for 53 yards. Keb Brawner led the KHS receiving corp with five receptions for 62 yards.
Winona running back Deriaun Townsend led all rushers with 263 yards and scored six of the Tigers seven touchdowns.
Winona scored first on a five-yard Townsend run for a 6-0 lead before Kossuth responded immediately with a seven-yard TD from Alexander and 2-point conversion to take an 8-6 lead. Townsend scored again midway thru the first quarter with the two-point conversion making it 14-6 Tigers. Back came the Aggies on a five-yard Alexander touchdown run to hand KHS a 15-14 lead.
The Aggies scored finally found the end zone again in the second quarter on Seago’s eight-yard TD hookup with Jacobs, ending a 19-0 Winona run and cutting the score to 33-21.
Seago would score early in the third quarter on a one-yard run to slice the Tigers lead to 33-27. Winona would score 15 unanswered points before the Aggies scored their final TD on a two-yard Seago run late in the game for the final margin.
Kossuth head coach Brian Kelly was not available for comment following the game.
(G) Alcorn Central 50 Tremont 26
Glen — After falling one point short in their season opener at Blue Mountain Tuesday, the Lady Bears responded in a big way by running past Tremont 50-26 Friday in their 2020-21 home opener.
Senior point guard Ella Mask led AC with a game-high 25 while Emi Mask added 10 to help Central even their record at 1-1.
“We started slow but were able to pick up the pace and get into a rhythm,” said Lady Bear head coach Alan Wood. “We were able to start subbing in and out pretty quickly.”
Central was in control the entire game, building a comfortable 34-15 halftime lead.
AC will host a pair of games next week, welcoming East Union on Tuesday before Tishomingo County rolls into town next Friday.
(B) Alcorn Central 80 Tremont 56
Glen — The Golden Bears stayed unbeaten with a convincing 80-56 home win over Tremont with Brady Talley leading the charge with 26 points.
Talley’s total included eight 3-pointers, with half of those coming in a huge third quarter when AC built a 31-point lead after enjoying a 33-26 halftime cushion.
“We looked better tonight than we did at Blue Mountain on both offense and defense,” said new Central head coach Josh Harrison, speaking of his squad’s 79-75 season opening win over the Cougars.
Alex Moore followed Brady in double figures, pouring in 25, his second straight game with over 20 points.
The Golden Bears are now 2-0 heading into home games next week against East Union and Tishomingo County.