SHANE SHOEMAKER – Writer
The Region 3-1A champion South Pittsburg Pirates (11-0) started their road back to a seventh state championship in dominating fashion last Friday night, crushing the Jo Byrns Red Devils (1-10), 63-0.
South Pittsburg was able to score in all three phases, with five different Pirates accounting for scores. Kamden Wellington and RaCash Kelly were the dynamic duo of the evening, connecting three times. Wellington found Kelly twice in the first quarter on 7- and 36-yard passes, and then on another 36-yarder in the third quarter. Wellington would only throw one incompletion for the evening, going 11-for-12 for 137 yards and three touchdowns. He would also add a 20-yard touchdown run in the second quarter. Kelly was the leading receiver, catching seven passes for 110 yards and three touchdowns. Between Wellington and Kelly’s first-quarter scores, the Pirates blocked a Red Devils’ punt that was recovered by Logan Hargis in the end zone to put South Pittsburg up 12-0.
Jamarion Farrior also had three touchdowns. His first was a 28-yard pick-six with 3:45 left in the first half. He’d score once more before the half ended; however, this time on offense with a 2-yard run. His last was in the third quarter on a 45-yard sprint that gave him a total of 67 yards on four carries. JaMychal Buckner was the leading rusher for the evening, rushing seven times for 68 yards but no scores. Ky’Saun Powell would score the last of the Pirates’ touchdowns in the fourth quarter on an 8-yard run, carrying the ball two times for 23 yards.
If the score wasn’t evident enough, the Pirates outgained the Red Devils in total offense by 309 yards (343-33). South Pittsburg threw for 121 yards and rushed for 221. Jo Byrns’ only positive yardage came from 46 passing yards, as they had -13 rushing.
South Pittsburg’s shutout over Jo Byrns gave them their sixth of the season. This Friday, the Pirates will once again play host, this time to the Clay County Bulldogs (7-4), as they move onto the second round.
-Photo credits to Cindy Desrosier