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New Albany capped a perfect regular season with a 49-6 win over Tishomingo County at Kitchens’ Field Friday night.
“It’s been a good year. We never expected it to be this good, but to finish the regular season at 11-0, I have to give all the credit to our coaches,” NAHS head coach Ron Price said. “They’ve worked extremely hard making sure these kids know the game of football and are ready to play every Friday night.”
Tying the school record for wins (11) and ending the regular season undefeated for the first time since 1962, the Bulldogs had no problem handling the Braves, as they jumped to a 21-0 lead. Tishomingo County opened the game with a fumble on the kickoff, leading to the first of two Kelvin Worship touchdowns. Tyler Basil connected with Taylor Goode and a Dalvin Carr interception led to Basil’s second touchdown pass, this time to Kareem Brown.
The Braves managed one touchdown late in the first quarter by Joe Kain, with the extra point blocked by Shane Smith.
The Bulldogs added two more scores in the second, including Goode’s second touchdown from Basil. Goode finished the night with 75 receiving yards off three catches, while Basil reached the 2,000 yard mark in passing, ending the night with 119 yards off of 6-for-9 passing and three touchdowns. Worshp led the rushing attack with 94 yards, followed by Boston Newsome with 49 yards.
New Albany’s final score came late in the game, as O.J. Hardin had an interception return for a touchdown.
“We have great kids with great character putting on a New Albany uniform every day,” Price said of his team. “It’s great to see good men and good kids achieve success, and I’m very proud of them.”
Defensively, Riley Alef and Zach Hand each had nine tackles, while Josh Creekmore added three sacks, followed by Hand with two. Newsome also added a sack, while Brown and Smith each recovered a fumble.
The pressure is on the Bulldogs now as they enter next week’s first round playoff action, hosting Tunica Rosa Fort. Staying focused each week will be key in New Albany’s run for a state championship.
“We have to stay focused at this point, because if you don’t, you could be one and done,” Price said. “We want our kids to understand what’s going on now that we’ve entered the playoffs, we’ve got to get better every week and come every Friday night and play a perfect game. Anything can happen from this point on, and if you mess up one time, your season can be over real quick.”
The Bulldogs will host Rosa Fort next Friday night, Nov. 5.