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Northeast to turn up the heat on defense

By By Jeff Byrd/The Meridian Star
Sept. 27, 2001
A playoff berth remains in order for the Northeast Lauderdale Trojans if they can find a defense.
The Trojans opened Region 5-4A play last week in Magee and came away with a 50-46 loss. Add the 37 points allowed in a 44-37 win against West Lauderdale and that's 87 points given up in just two games.
That won't cut it for Trojans Head Coach Andy Stevens. Changes were made this week in practice and fans should expect to see a much sounder unit when the Trojans host the West Jones Mustangs Friday night.
The loss at Magee dropped Northeast to 3-1 overall and 0-1 in Region 5-4A. West Jones enters with a 1-3 record and is also 0-1 in region play following a 34-21 loss at home to Mendenhall last week.
West Jones actually took a 14-0 lead against Mendenhall. But turnovers did in the Mustangs in the second half as Mendenhall scored 27 straight points.
The Mustangs are led by quarterback Terry McCullum and running back Chester Lee Keyes. Both had scores against Mendenhall which included a 76-yard run by Keyes. The Mustang defense also scored a touchdown.
West Jones' lone win came against South Jones. They lost to Taylorsville 17-14 in week one and to 4A power Lawrence County 23-2.
The Trojans are paced by a three-pronged running attack led by fullback Marcus Betts, quarterback Steven Dyess and tailback Kelvin Horne.
The Trojans also have Calvin Scott who returned a kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown against West Lauderdale.
The Northeast defense is led by linebacker Robert Carlisle.
Jeff Byrd is a sports writer for The Meridian Star. Call him at 693-1551, ext. 3235, or e-mail him at jbyrd@themeridianstar.com.

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