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Lamar drops one to Starkville Academy

By By Ryan Satcher/The Meridian Star
Nov. 10, 2001
The Starkville Academy Volunteers used a strong defense and big plays to defeat the Raiders of Lamar, 41-7.
All of the Volunteer touchdowns came on gains of more than thirty yards and Lamar could only put together 124 yards of offense in their tuneup for next week's playoff game.
The first of those big plays would come with 2:58 left in the first quarter when Bryan Howell took the hand off on a 4-and-1 play at the Lamar 39 yardline and went the distance to make the score 7-0 at the end of the first quarter.
Starkville's next possession would stall at their own 39 until a roughing the punter call gave them a new set of downs. The Volunteers took advantage of the extra opportunity as quarterback Bryce Morgan hooked up with Parker Mullins for a 35-yard touchdown pass. The extra point made the score 14-0 with 10:00 left to play in the half.
Lamar managed to stay in the game with some key forced turnovers. The Raiders forced two fumbles and got a big interception from Blake Olmsted. With just over a minute to play the Raiders seemed to dodge a bullet when Roland Terry recovered a Starkville fumble at the Raider 34.
The next play, however, Lamar was not so lucky as Mullins intercepted a pass and ran it in for a 37-yard touchdown. Starkville took the 21-0 lead into halftime.
Lamar put together a couple first downs in the third quarter and looked like they may begin to move the football. One of those first downs came on a 4-and-2 pass of 29 yards to Zach Moore from Drew Moffett.
The drives were stalled by a great Starkville defense. The Starkville offense finally came back to life with 4:33 left to play in the third quarter. Quarterback Casey Woods connected with Mullins for a 59-yard touchdown pass and the visitors took a 28-0 lead.
The Raiders responded with a nice 44-yard kickoff return by Jay Grantham to put them at the Starkville 46. Moffett hit wide receiver Daniel Harrison for a 39-yard touchdown to put Lamar on the board with 2:36 left in the third. Heath Rush added the extra point to make the score 28-7.
Lamar looked like they would have another chance to score when Cameron Coleman recovered a fumble on Starkville's first play from scrimmage. Lamar took over the ball at the Volunteer 42 but was not able to take advantage of the field position as Starkville got a big sack to push the Raiders back and stall the drive.
Starkville would finish out the game with two more scores. The first one came on a 67-yard pass from Woods to Joby Garner. The pass was tipped by a Lamar defender, but Garner caught the batted ball and ran the rest of the way untouched. With 2:32 left to play in the game, Starkville finished out the scoring with a run by Garner of 57 yards.
Garner ended the game with 118 yards receiving and scored two touchdowns and Mullins reached the endzone three times and had 120 yards receiving. Woods led the Starkville passing attack with 211 yards.
The loss drops Lamar's record to 3-8. They will travel to play Silliman Institute (La.) in first round playoff action on Friday.