SUMMIT — Everything came together perfectly Saturday night as Pearl River rolled to a 37-9 victory at Southwest to spoil the Bears' Homecoming.
"I'm just proud of these guys," PRCC coach Ted Egger said. "It's easy when you have a tough season and face adversity to not show up, but our guys continued to work, continued to show up and had success tonight.
"That's all I wanted for them."
Pearl River (1-6, 1-4 MACJC South) saw equal contributions from each position grouping as the Wildcats passed for 230 yards and two touchdowns, rushed for 177 yards and two touchdowns and even scored a defensive touchdown on a scoop-and-score.
"It starts with our run game," Egger said. "We did a good job running the ball and it opened up the vertical passing. Our quarterbacks were able to find those guys and our receivers made some great catches. Everybody played great tonight."
Ron Thompson (Bassfield) opened the game's scoring, breaking loose for a 35-yard score. After Josh Smith returned a fumble 22 yards to push the Wildcats ahead 14-0, Thompson found pay dirt again in the second quarter on a 23-yard run.
The passing attack came alive in the second half as Cooper Callis (Jackson; Jackson, Missouri) rotated into the game for Tavis Williams (Gulfport; Harrison Central) and completed 9 of 12 passes for 170 yards and two scores. His first touchdown strike was a quick pass to the right side. K.J. Breland (Brooklyn; Forrest County AHS) spun off a defender and sprinted 49 yards untouched down the PRCC sideline for a 28-9 advantage.
Early in the fourth quarter Callis connected with Tyler Polk (St. Martin) for a 33-yard strike.
"The plays were there all night," Breland said. "We just came back in the second half and executed really well."
Will Lang completed the scoring with a 36-yard field goal in the fourth.
Cory Jackson (Madison-Ridgeland Academy; Jackson) had arguably his biggest performance of the season, forcing three fumbles to lead the defensive's smothering effort.
"He brought it," Egger said of the sophomore linebacker. "That's the kind of performance you expect from him."
Thompson had a game-high 125 yards on 13 carries. Polk and Breland had big games through the air for PRCC. Polk recorded four receptions for 100 yards, while Breland added four catches for 71. Williams started the game at quarterback and completed 7 of 18 passes for 53 yards. He also rushed for 20 yards.
"Don't quit. Never quit," Jackson said. "It's been a hard season and not the season we wanted, but we never quit."
Pearl River returns to the gridiron Oct. 20 for Homecoming contest against Mississippi Gulf Coast. Kickoff is set for 2:00 p.m.
Oct. 13: Pearl River at Southwest