• John Macon Gillespie

Crosstown Classic 2015

Lafayette County is home to perhaps the best rivalry in the Magnolia state. When Oxford and Lafayette face off it never disappoints. Last night was status quo to say the least. Entering the matchup both teams were ranked in the SES Top 10.

For most of the night the game was close and competitive, but Oxford was able to sneak away at the end winning 31-21.

With two offenses that know how to get it done, the game seemingly would come down to which defense could come up with a crucial stop. However, it was more of a case of Lafayette not being able to finish drives.

The Commodores twice failed to score after getting inside Oxford’s 10 yard line. On top of that they missed three field goals.

It is easy to look at those missed chances and say that Lafayette gave the game away, however, in the end the better of the two teams won the game in this writer’s opinion.

There’s no questioning that Oxford is one of the state’s premier teams and they have shown that offensively so far this season. However, their defense has been slower to get their feet beneath them. Last night Oxford’s defense was a key as it created pivotal turnovers and time after time kept the Commodore offense at bay.

“We really turned it on. We knew was at stake and we went out and made the plays,” Oxford senior linebacker Jack Turner said following the win.

The biggest play of the night for the Charger defense came late in the game with the Commodores driving. Sophomore defensive back CJ Terrell intercepted a pass downfield at the Chargers’ four yard line to basically seal the game.

“If they would have converted that they would have had a chance to score. It was really big for the team,” Terrell said.

Terrell had not one but two interceptions on the night.

There were bright spots for Lafayette in the loss, but none brighter than senior running back Tyrell Price. Price rushed for 245 yards and two scores. He put his usual display skill on as he was running through and past would-be tacklers.

But back to the rivalry and the scene that was on Friday night for a minute.

Both sides were loud all night long, as Oxford is just down the road and was able to bring a large contingent.

At times the Lafayette student section would chant “I believe. I believe that we will win.” A chant that became synonymous with U.S. Soccer during the 2014 World Cup. However, Oxford students returned the favor late in the fourth quarter with a “I believe that we just won” chant.

As you would guess the game was even more physical and intense between the white lines. There was yapping between the players after plays and hard hits aplenty. And if you question the passion and emotion, just watch our video interview with Jack Turner. He was ecstatic to be able to end his career with a victory over his biggest rival since his childhood.

Next week Lafayette will take on the Louisville Wildcats, while Oxford will be off.

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