Against a much improved Troopers squad it took overtime heroics to come away with a 21-20 victory.
Mooreville tied the game 14-14 with 1:43 remaining in the fourth quarter on a perfectly placed 14-yard pass from MHS quarterback Griff Loftis to receiver Austin Lauderdale, who was able to drag his feet and maintain possession of the ball while diving out the side of the end zone.
In overtime, Water Valley went back to quarterback E.J. Bounds, who had scored the Blue Devils’ other two touchdowns on runs of 2 and 4 yards.
On first down Bounds took the snap out of shotgun and dashed 10 yards up the middle of the field for the score.
Alex Robles‘ extra point put Water Valley ahead 21-14.
After running back Josh Johnson was hit for a 2-yard loss on first down, Loftis struck again.
This time the accurate Mooreville passer connected with Errick Dillworth down the Troopers’ sideline on another perfect pass for a 12-yard touchdown strike.
On the extra point, C.J. Jackson said he was able to break through the line untouched because of the blocking of teammate Justin McCammon and knock down the kick, sealing the victory.
Post-game, Embry said credit is due to defensive coordinator Richard Russo, defensive line coach Bryant Mix and offensive line coach Clint Faust for drawing up the scheme that freed Jackson.
Loftis, who Russo described as the “most accurate passer we have seen in four years,” passed for 138 yards and scored the game’s first touchdown on a 1-yard quarterback sneak.
Next up for Water Valley is a road trip to South Pontotoc next Friday. (October 1, 2011)