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Stalling Offense Dooms Choctaws on Senior Day
Mississippi College fell to the West Florida Argonauts 42-14.
Despite the high temperatures on Senior Day, the Choctaws could not wake up their recently cold offense, as the talented and hungry West Florida Argonauts came away with the win. Mississippi College now falls to 3-6 on the season and 2-5 in the Gulf South Conference, while the Argos improve to 7-3 (5-2 GSC) and remain alive in the Division 2 playoff race.
The Choctaws came out motivated in the first quarter, pinning the Argos at their own ten before getting a stop on the first drive. Later in the quarter, the Choctaws took the lead 7-0 on a drive that featured a 55-yard run by Marcus Williams. The drive was capped off with a one-yard dive by Cameron Davis. The Argos were able to tie the game in the second quarter on another long run, this time with a touchdown from 42 yards out by Jamontez Woods, making it 7-7.
It appeared that the score would hold until halftime; however, Argo quarterback Peewee Jarrett forced the ball deep into double coverage with under a minute to go in the first half. Wide receiver John Jiles rewarded Jarrett with a juggling catch for a touchdown with 48 seconds left in the half, giving West Florida a 14-7 lead going into the break.
The second half was where the wheels fell off for the Choctaws. The third quarter seemed to belong to the Argos, and for Choctaw fans, seemed to never end. West Florida scored three touchdowns in the quarter as Jarrett tossed two more touchdowns, one more to Jiles and the other to Caden Leggett. The Argos blocked a punt in the endzone, which was eventually covered by special teamer Mi’Chaun Coward. The scoring flurry from the Argonauts made the score 35-7 and rendered Robinson-Hale Stadium nearly silent, aside from the occasional complaint directed toward the officials.
The fourth quarter saw signs of life out of the Choctaws in the form of a 40-yard touchdown connection between Cameron Davis and Me’Kyle Franklin. However, it was not enough; the Argos would tack on one more score late in the game, making the final score 42-14.
The Choctaw offense struggled throughout the game, gaining only 233 total yards and failing to move the ball with rare exceptions. Marcus Williams was often that exception, as he rushed for 129 yards on just 16 carries for an average of 8.1 yards per carry. Quarterback Cameron Davis did not make much of his limited passing attempts, going 6-10 for 57 yards and a touchdown. Me’Kyle Franklin led the way receiving, with his only catch being a 40-yard touchdown.
The Choctaw defense gave up 568 total yards despite coming up with big stops early in the game and was clearly exhausted down the stretch, with the Argos possessing the ball for over 37 total minutes. Jason Betz was the Choctaws’ leading tackler with seven total tackles, while Brennan Blake added a sack, Deshawn Washington batted down four passes, and Collin Williams had an interception that he returned 45 yards.
Peewee Jarrett went 14-25 with 235 yards, 3 touchdowns, and one interception. His leading receiver was, per usual, John Jiles, who went for 110 yards and two touchdowns on just 5 receptions. Jamontez Woods was West Florida’s leading rusher, going for 113 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries.
The Choctaws will now prepare themselves to take on #14 Delta State (8-1, 6-1 GSC) in an attempt to return the Heritage Bell Trophy to Clinton for the first time since 2019. The game will be at 2 p.m. CT in Cleveland, Miss. at McCool Stadium.
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