Tigers Flex Muscles

Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 4, 2003

You would have thought the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were playing the Cleveland Browns in a National Football League contest by the looks of Tiger Stadium in Greenville Friday night.

The home side stands were jammed packed with eager fans cheering for the Greenville High School Tigers as they celebrated Home coming. As for the visitor's side, it was only sprinkled with a few faithful fans rooting for the Russell County High School Warriors.

The Tigers (3n3, 2n2) settled down after allowing an 11nyard touchdown run on a reverse play during the first drive of the game to capture a 28n7 win over the Warriors (1n5) capping off an eventful Homecoming week.

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"It was great for the fans," GHS Head Coach Alvin Briggs said. "That's what Homecom-ing's all about. Students come back and cheer for the alma mater and things went great and that's what you want. I've got a lot of pride here because this is where I went to school, this where I played at and I had all my buddies come back to watch us play. We all want to do well."

Greenville scored first when senior quarterback Jacoby Thagard connected with senior receiver J.C. Anderson on a 63nyard pass pattern. Following junior Rod Owens' point after kick, the Tigers tied the game 7n7.

The Tigers only found the end zone one more time before the half when senior running back Antonio Mack bulled his way in for the score from 1nyard out. Owens' kick gave GHS a 14n7 lead at the half.

Greenville's defense played strong slowing the Warriors' running game down throughout the second quarter and second half. The secondary also played tough swatting down many passes and giving up little yardage.

"We broke down on some blocking assignments and they got a good surge up on us in the second half with their defensive front," RCHS Head Coach Oliver Davis said. "Their linebackers caused problems for us and we didn't pick up the blitzes like we needed to get the running game back going like we had in the first quarter."

Senior Andrew Tomlin padded the Tigers' lead with a 10nyard touchdown run late in the third quarter. The kick failed, but GHS was in control 20n7.

Mack scored the final touchdown of the evening for Greenville as he muscled his way into the end zone from 1nyard out. Thagard connected with Anderson on the twonpoint conversion play to give the Tigers a 28n 7 lead.

Greenville finished the night with 409 yards of total offense including 235nyards rushing. Thagard led the Tigers offensively with 15 carries for 104 yards and was 5non7 passing for 174 yards and a touchdown.

The Tigers' defense limited the Warriors to 109 yards on the ground, 73nyards passing and caused three turnovers. Sophomore Trent Deshazo and Sammie Hawkins recovered fumbles for GHS and Jonathan Mosely intercepted a pass.

Greenville will host Booker T. Washington next Friday night in a region matchup.