• John Macon Gillespie

Coverage Recap: Amory 29 | New Albany 18

The region 1-4A champion, Amory(10-2), is moving on to the second round after a 29-18 victory over New Albany(5-7). It wasn’t easy, but as first-year head coach Allen Glenn said after the game, “Panther magic is back.”

The first possession was not an accurate indicator of how the game would play out. New Albany was forced to punt on their first drive and the ball was snapped out of the endzone for a safety. The Panthers looked to be en route to a blow out victory, but not so fast. A Zatorious Gates fumble in the redzone on Amory’s first chance with the ball would slow that a bit.

On the next possession for the Panthers Gates would make up for it with a 53-yard scoring scamper. The snap was not handled well on the extra point and Amory would hold an 8-0 advantage through the end of the first period of play.

New Albany would respond quickly in the second quarter on a touchdown run from Sam McMillan. The senior started the season as QB1, but an injury forced sophomore Logan Bolen into that role. While Bolen proved to be better in the second half when the pressure was dialed up, the Bulldogs needed the running element McMillan brought in the first half.

Speaking of Bolen’s improved play in the second half, it was due to his comfort with the timing of the offense when the tempo was sped up. He would throw a touchdown to Jordan Lipsey before completing a two-point conversion to Sam Cagle. That would be the end of the Bulldog scoring.

On the other side, Monzavier Latham was a man amongst boys on the ground. He finished with 111 rushing yards and a score. However, it was his punishing running style and constant forward progress that demoralized the Bulldog defensive unit and eventually wore them down. Latham assumed most of the carries on the night due to JJ Jernigan, the team’s leading rusher during the regular season, being needed more on defense.

Gates would also sling a touchdown toss to Hakee Rainey. Jernigan would score the final touchdown on the night, closing the door on the Bulldogs’ season.

Player of the Game: Monzavier Latham

Other players that stood out(who have not already been mentioned):

Amory Panthers:

The entire offensive line(especially in the second half), Immanuel Jones, Jalen Holland, James Bennett, D’Andre McGinister, Zach Herron, Mike Williams, Cortavious Ivy, Patrick Berry and BJ McIntosh.

New Albany Bulldogs:

Overton Johnson, Drew Welborn, Joe Rainey and Bryson Prather.

Up next:

Amory will advance to face Cleveland in the second round of the playoffs.

Photo by @AmoryFB

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