Friday marks the end of the regular football season for DeSoto County public high schools, and the start of the playoff season for Northpoint Christian School. Meanwhile, a loss Friday ended the year for Magnolia Heights.
The 3-7 Northpoint Christian Trojans travel Friday to Nashville to meet 7-3 Franklin Road Academy (FRA) in the first round of the TSSAA Division II-AA playoffs. It’s the first-ever meeting between the schools.
Northpoint is back in the playoffs after missing out in 2018, and comes in coach Tyler Gold’s initial season coaching the Trojans.
FRA will hope to recover from a two-game losing streak after winning seven of its first eight games.
Friday’s winner will play the winner of the St. George's-Lausanne game, also happening this Friday night.
Playoff spots are on the line with the final week of the MHSAA 6A and 5A seasons Friday. Olive Branch and Horn Lake appear in line for the postseason in 6A from DeSoto County and Lake Cormorant is in for 5A. Center Hill may have an outside shot, but would need to upset defending three-time state champion West Point Friday at home for that to be possible.
Elsewhere on the schedule for Friday, DeSoto Central and Lewisburg wrap up their season on the Patriots’ home field. Olive Branch travels to Hernando and Horn Lake is at Southaven in playoff warmups for the Quistors and defending 6A titlist Eagles. Lake Cormorant is at Oxford Lafayette in a game that determines if the Gators are the second or third seed from their region.
The season ended last week for the Magnolia Heights Chiefs, which dropped a 35-30 result to 10th-seeded Starkville Academy in the first round of the MAIS Class 5A playoffs. The Chiefs were the seventh seed in the postseason. Starkville Academy plays this week in the quarterfinals at Lamar School.
In other action last week, Gary Banks II ran for 177 yards and the Olive Branch defense held Lewisburg to 35 total yards offense in a 12-0 Quistors’ victory. Jason Curry threw for two touchdowns and 116 passing yards, while Richard Coleman ran over the Southaven defense for 221 yards and three scores in DeSoto Central’s 31-28 conquest of the crosstown Chargers in claiming the Odis McCord Classic trophy. Tadarius Vaughn and Deangelo Stokes also caught scoring strikes for the Jaguars.
Quarterback Telvin Amos threw for 78 yards and a touchdown pass to JJ Daniels in the Gators’ 38-0 whitewash of Saltillo. Jadelldrien Maggett ran for 65 yards in the victory.
Oxford handled Hernando 36-6 and Tupelo outscored Horn Lake 28-20. Northpoint ended the regular season with a 10-7 victory against Harding Academy. No statistics were immediately available from those contests.
NORTHWEST SEEKS TITLE SATURDAY: Northwest Mississippi Community College returns to the MACJC state championship game Saturday, hosting Mississippi Gulf Coast at 2 p.m. in Senatobia. Both teams advanced with victories last week, including the Rangers’ 24-17 win against Jones County.
STATE CROSS COUNTRY: At the Class 5A state cross country finals Monday at Choctaw Trails in Clinton, Center Hill’s Gabe Gipson was sixth among the boys’ finishers with a time of 17:27.1 and Lady Mustang Emily Weinberg was her team’s top finisher, finishing 31st at 24:28.3. The Center Hill boys were third as a team and girls were sixth overall.
Wednesday in Class 6A, DeSoto Central's Adam Gomez won the state individual boys' title in a time of 16:32.90. David Cox of Southaven followed in second place in a time of 16.46.10.
As a team, Southaven was the best DeSoto County finish with a fifth-place result (182 points). Hernando was 11th (272), followed by DeSoto Central in 12th place (279). Pearl was the state boys' champion with 53 points scored.
Lewisburg also scored in the state boys' meet, finishing in 24th place.
With three of the top-ten individual girls' runners coming from Hernando, the Lady Tigers took home the state 6A team championship with 62 points.
Jessica Cartwright was third in the individual race with a time of 20:24.83, followed by Riley Jackson in fourth place at 20:26.97.
Delaney Hopkins also made the top ten finishers, in ninth place at 20:50.51.
Lewisburg was 19th in the overall team standings.
Bob Bakken is Sports Editor for the DeSoto Times-Tribune.