by Hunter Dawkins, Publisher

Just as it has many times in the past, the 2021 football season came down to a battle of inches at the goal line.  Unfortunately for Pass Christian, the inches were not gained and the Pirates lost their chance to advance in the Mississippi High School Sports Association (MHSAA) 4A State Playoffs on Friday, November 5 being shutout by Newton County High School 3-0 in the first round.

Winning their last two regular season games to earn a playoff bid for the sixth time in team history, the Pirates (5-4) played on the road bringing an aggressive offense with nearly 3000 total yards and a stingy defense (7 sacks, 8 interceptions).

As the game rolled on without any real offensive firepower from either side and only one field goal conversion, the Newton County Cougars mounted a goal-line stand at their 2-yard line with 5:26 remaining and held on to beat Pass Christian 3-0 in the first round of the MHSAA Class 4A football playoffs on Friday night.

“It was a great game if you’re a fan of defense.  We battled all night and had trouble getting points on the board,” said Pass Christian High School Head Football Coach Chase Carmody, who finished his second year with the program.  “Hate that it ended that way for our seniors.  I’m thankful for how that group led us out of our slump that we were in and battled to make the playoffs.  This group went to the playoffs two of the last three years and have raised expectations for our program.”

Pass Christian signal caller Kameron White finished his last game under center for the Pirates, completing 13-21 passes for 109 yards and rushing 19 attempts for 80 yards.  The stats were only minimal to the historical production of White, who finished his career with 4669 yards of total offense (passing, rushing, or receiving), 53 touchdowns, and 38 tackles.

Across the line on the defensive side, several players provided quality numbers throughout their career.  Three-year starting middle linebacker Xavian Chamberlain stabilized his presence with 236 tackles and 5 fumble recoveries.  Linebacker Aden Purchner had 162 tackles, 2 sacks, 2 fumble recoveries followed by fellow linebacker Bryson Adams’ contribution with 89 tackles and 4 sacks.

Senior Defensive Back Jaylin Acker produced outstanding three year career numbers with 72 tackles and 3 interceptions.  Dual threat linebacker/receiver Thomas Gorman, who provided 38 tackles, 3 interceptions on defense and 8 receptions along with a touchdown.

Finally, Pass High placekicker Davon Klein completes his time for the Pirates with record numbers.  In his four year career, Klein has kicked just under 100 extra points and 10 field goals which gives him the highest scoring placekicker in the history of the program.

With the 91st season officially wrapped up, the Pirates have built a solid foundation in their MHSAA classification by earning playoff spots in four of the last six years.

(Photo credits go to Brett Maze of The Newton County Appeal)