Raiders soar past Springfield

Published 11:00 pm Friday, September 28, 2018

Pine’s Raiders used a balanced offensive attack and an opportunistic defense to defeat visiting Springfield, 36-7, at homecoming on Friday.

Pine junior quarterback Logan Temples had a strong performance in the first half, as the Raiders built a 36-0 lead by halftime. In that half, Temples was 9-of-11 for 213 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions.

“I thought we came out and played a really good football game,” Pine coach Bradley Seal said. “We were strong in all three phases of the game — offense, defense and special teams.”

Pine senior Markell Cotton had a standout game on both sides of the ball. He scored a touchdown run, had four receptions and created two turnovers — an interception and a fumble recovery on an incomplete lateral attempt.

Cotton returned the interception 76 yards for Pine’s third touchdown of the game.

“I made the catch and I was happy because I could see the field wide open in front of me,” Cotton said. “We really work hard on defense.”

The Raiders caused four turnovers in the first half, including three on three straight Springfield possessions in the second quarter.

Pine (3-2, 1-1 in District 9-2A) took the opening kickoff and scored on its first possession of the game. The Raiders went 61 yards on eight plays, with Cotton scoring from 3 yards out with 9:26 left in the first. The two-point conversion failed, following a penalty.

Springfield (2-3, 0-2) punted the ball back with 7:49 remaining in the first half, and the Raiders’ offense went to work once again. Jordan Anderson scored on a 3-yard run with 3:16 left in the first, and Temples passed to Cotton for the two-point conversion.

The score was 14-0 after one quarter, and Pine added to its lead when Cotton intercepted a Zach Wild pass after the Bulldogs had driven down to Pine’s 28. Cotton returned the interception 76 yards and Jaheim Williams added a two-point conversion run to put Pine ahead 22-0 with 8:54 left in the second quarter.

The Raiders increased their lead to 30-0 on a one-play scoring drive. After a Springfield punt was downed at the Pine 17, Temples found Anderson open down the left sideline and the receiver then broke away from the defense for an 83-yard touchdown pass. Williams added the two-point run with 6:42 left in the second.

Pine’s final touchdown was a 1-yard touchdown run by Drake Westmoreland. Westmoreland also put the Raiders’ offense in strong position on that drive, with a good defensive play. He intercepted a pass from Wild at the Pine 44 and returned it to the Springfield 21 with 6:02 left.

Pine failed on its two-point conversion run after Westmoreland’s touchdown, but the Raiders still led 36-0 with 5:14 left in the first half.

Later in the half, the Raiders recovered a fumble and Williams intercepted a pass.

The second half was played with a running clock. Springfield spoiled the shutout on the final play of the game, when John’L Fryson scored from 12 yards out and Carlos Rosano added the extra point.

After the game, Seal said that the Raiders have a great opportunity next Friday as they host Amite.

“We have played close games against good teams recently,” Seal said. “I think it’s time for us to take the next step and win a game against a tough team like Amite.”