DCHS mistakes help Panthers to rout

Published 10:36 pm Friday, September 2, 2011

By Robert Hudson | Selma Times-Journal

When the Jemison High School Panthers took the field against Dallas County High School, they were on a mission, as they swatted the Hornets 57-0.

Jemison head football coach Merritt Bowden said his team was focused entering the game.

“We talked all week and just tried to focus on us, on getting better as a team,” Bowden said. “Right now the guys have bought into that and continuing to play hard on every snap.”

The Panthers asserted their dominance right out the gate, as Eddie Hubbard returned the opening kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown.

A two-point conversion put the Panthers up 8-0.

After recovering a Dallas County fumble on the ensuing offensive possession, Jemison quarterback Tre Bryant found a wide-open Javae Swindle for a 27-yard touchdown pass to put the Panthers up 14-0 with 11:25 left in the first quarter.

The Panthers then held the Hornets to a three-and-out, and four plays later Bryant hit Hubbard who broke the screen pass for a 31-yard touchdown to put the Panthers up 22-0 with 4:46 left in the first quarter.

Hubbard said his team played as unit, which pushed them to victory.

“What we kept focusing on was one thing, and what we focused on is oneness. We focused on being one team, one unit.” Hubbard said. “Me being a senior, I knew that I had to lead my team. They’re going to follow me in what I do, so I lead by example and played my heart out.”

Turnovers were the name of the game for the Hornets as they gave the ball away five times, all fumbles. Three of those fumbles were recovered by Panthers defenders for touchdowns.

Dallas County head football coach Willie Moore said Jemison was a much better team.

“We know they were a very dangerous team, they’ve got a lot of athletes, they’re a seasoned team,” Moore said. “They’re a much better football team. They’re program is in a different stage than ours is.”