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Enjoying new sport at Leggett

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092922 leggett volleyballMarilyn Jimenez takes the serve-receive. Amanda Costlow gets a hand on the serve. Photos by Brian Besch

By Brian Besch
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Leggett volleyball lost in straight sets Tuesday to Spurger 25-4, 25-9 and 25-5 at Dudley Dickens Gymnasium.

Leggett was able to compete in the second set, and the third set was a one-point game until Spurger went on a run to close it out.

“It is our first year back. there is a lot of learning and we need to stop being lazy,” Leggett coach Terri Barlow said of her bunch. “We need to bend our knees, because you can’t play any sport standing straight up. In volleyball, you have to bend your knees and get down.”

It has been three or four years since the Lady Pirates fielded a volleyball team. Many of the girls went to the administration to ask if they could participate in the 2022 season. Barlow said the last time Leggett had a volleyball team, they advanced to the playoffs.

Leggett has yet to win a game to this point in the season, but has won a couple of sets. The girls appear to be having fun, enjoying a learning experience.

“They are getting there and they just need to trust each other,” Barlow said. “I told them until we come together as a team, it isn’t going to happen. They have to relax and just play and not worry about what anybody else says. We just need to play and have fun.”

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Unbeaten in non-district play

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092522 bulldog footballBulldog senior Anthony Harrell catches a highly-contested pass from quarterback Morgan Rayburn.Bulldog senior Angel Reyes breaks away from the huge pile up with the help of the rest of the Corrigan offense for a touchdown run. Photos by Albert Trevino

By Albert Trevino
Enterprise Staff

Corrigan-Camden finished a perfect non-district record with a 56-20 road victory against the Hempstead Bobcats on Friday.

The recently reorganized Bulldog offensive lineup continued to fire on all cylinders in the blowout win Friday, mixing it up in the run and long passing game.

“I feel really good about calling anybody’s number. I see what they are doing and feel confident about running the plays we need to be successful.” said Bulldog coach Brett Ratliff.

While senior backs JaVarion Williams and Anthony Harrell provided big run gains for Corrigan, primary passer Morgan Rayorn also threw bombs throughout the game. The Bulldogs ran up the score early to a blowout lead by the halfway point.

“Morgan ran the offense effectively tonight. He was very surgical. I wanted to do things right and be smart [in order to] finish the game.” said Bulldog head Brett Ratliff. “Anthony and JaVarion ran the ball really well early on. That put [Hempstead’s] strong focus on the run. Then, we were able to open up and exploit some things.” Ratliff said.

Corrigan started with great field position on the opening drive, moving the chains quickly with Williams and Harrell on the one-two punch on the ground. Williams finished the drive with a 20-plus yard touchdown run for the first score.

Hempstead botched the long snap in their first possession, giving up another short field for the Corrigan offense. Bulldog junior receiver Bayden Lawrence caught a short touchdown pass from Rayburn to finish that possession and take a 14-0 lead.

The following kickoff was returned all the way to Bulldog 35, but Hempstead’s offense was unable to capitalize. Corrigan quickly took advantage with Williams sprinting along the sideline for an 80-plus yard touchdown run to make it a three-score game early.

Things got even worse for Hempstead’s last possession in the first quarter, as they muffed the kickoff return and gave Corrigan another short field.

The play of the night came on fourth down near the redzone, where Bulldog senior receiver Angel Reyes got help from nearly the entire offense, pushing forward to break through the scrum for a huge touchdown run.

The Bobcats were able to respond going into the second with a long keeper into the red zone by junior quarterback Marlon Fisher. This help set up junior back Calvin Thompson to later punch it in for a short touchdown run for six points.

However, the Bulldog offense would continue their assault on the ground and air to start putting the game away.

Lawrence would finish the next drive catching a long teardrop pass in the end zone from Rayborn.

Shortly after, Hempstead coughed up the ball at their own one yard line. It set up an easy touchdown run for Bulldog senior back Kadyn Burke, as Corrigan began to put the final nails in the coffin going into halftime.

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Defensive pride

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092522 livingston football Connor Starr (44) scores a touchdown in the second half. Photos by Drew Dunson

By Brian Besch
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Livingston football ruined homecoming in Madisonville, taking a 21-9 win behind a stellar defensive performance and consistent ground game.

The Lions rushed for 185 yards and threw for another 43, but the defense would top all performances Friday. The Mustangs accumulated just 102 total yards and had no answer for an attacking group that lived in their backfield.

Madisonville started the scoring with a 24-yard field goal after getting good field position on an interception in Lion territory. A 31-yard pass set them up with first-and-goal, but the Livingston defense would hold the home team to a short kick through the uprights.

Another turnover would produce the next points, but this time it was the Lions recovering a fumble on the Madisonville 15 yard line and driving five plays for a Jontavian McNeal 3-yard score.

“We came to play tonight. You can’t play high school defense better than that,” Livingston coach Finis Vanover said. “They had 17 yards at halftime and the staff and the kids went to work and they weren’t going to allow any more of that crazy scoring. We gave up a couple of runs, but they have some kids that can play too. Our kids played defense as passionately and soundly as you can. Our defensive backs covered like crazy in man coverage against two college-level athletes. We did a good job on special teams not letting them have anything.”

The best performance of the season comes just a day after what the coach called a “terrible practice,” where the team was kicked off the field midway through. The only negative was in 10 yellow flags thrown against the team in green.

“The drives were beautiful and then we would sputter. We’d have a big play and then it would get called back,” Vanover said. “I think we had seven in the first half that were killed on penalties and it’s just foolish. We missed an opportunity to just have a dominant game on both sides. We told them at the half that we’re not doing anything cute, we’re going big boy football. We told them that we didn’t think they could hold up to it. They couldn’t.”

A blocked punt near the end of the half put Madisonville on the Lion 5 yard line with just five seconds left. The pass defense would hold the Mustangs in their attempt for the end zone, batting down a pass on a slant pattern as time expired.

The Lions went into the locker room at the half up 7-3, holding Madisonville to just 17 yards of total offense for two quarters. Even the homecoming queen had better rushing stats than the Mustangs at halftime. They had negative 14 yards on seven attempts.

Livingston took their first possession of the second half for 60 yards in three plays, highlighted by a Conner Starr 49-yard run and finished on a McNeal 6-yard quarterback sneak. Both the offensive and defensive lines for the Lions were superior to their counterparts. The offensive line with Jonathon McNeal, Jace Morris, Evan Grimm, Eli Steagall and Bryce Stiegler helped the team win the time of possession battle.

The next Livingston possession also resulted in seven points. This time, a 12-play, 42-yard drive drained eight minutes of clock and ended with Starr in the end zone from three yards out. The Lions had to fight off several penalties near the goal line to eventually go up 21-3.

Madisonville made the game a bit closer when backup quarterback Jeramiah Burns ran for 38 yards to close the game to within 12, but the Lion defense stiffened from there.

Starr had a big game on both sides of the ball. He, along with Jatarius Randolph, Zaylon Bogany, Cameron Wright, Jarius Crew and Xavier Mendiola formed a dominant defensive front. The senior was also the leading rusher with 71 yards and a score.

“We were just really shutdown,” Starr said of the strong Lion defense. “Coach (Dalton) Murray put in a good game plan where we were just coming off the ball as a d-line and just put us in the best position to win and get some sacks and tackles for loss to make sure they don’t score. They weren’t stronger than us, and Coach Vanover conditioned us all offseason to get ready to be stronger than everybody else, and it showed. We played harder and stronger than everybody else out there. (Coach) put us in the best position to win and the team came together.

We said that we want to win and we are tired of losing. It was real fun.”

Vanover said it has been a while since he’s seen a Livingston team look as good as they did on Friday night.

“It is a different bunch and I couldn’t be more pleased with them. Our coaches kept them fresh and rotated them and had everybody zoned in. Everything matched what we have been doing for three weeks.”

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Still streaking

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091822 corrigan footballBulldog senior Anthony Harrell runs in open space near the red zone. Photo by Albert Trevino

By Albert Trevino
Enterprise Staff

The Corrigan-Camden Bulldogs maintained their early season win streak with a 33-30 victory over the Coldspring-Oakhurst Trojans Friday.

Despite the Trojans keeping the game within reach up until the final seconds, Corrigan managed to weather the storm on the road for their fourth straight non-district win.

The Trojans’ first play from scrimmage resulted in a fumble recovered by the Bulldogs. Corrigan’s offense capitalized with help from a big first-down run by senior Anthony Harrell. This set up a 15-yard touchdown run by senior back Ja’Varion Williams to take the early seven-point lead.

Coldspring responded on its next drive by gaining big chunks of yards in the run game. Near the goal line, sophomore Tyga Parker got the toss and took it in for a short touchdown, followed by a two-point conversion to steal the early lead by one.

Later in the first, the Trojans suffered another fumble turnover. The Bulldog offense quickly approached the goal line on the next possession and senior quarterback Morgan Rayborn punched it in for the touchdown to regain the lead.

The Bulldogs converted on a fourth-down run going into the second quarter, which helped set up a teardrop pass from Rayborn to Harrell in the end zone to extend the lead to 12 points.

After an interception on the next Corrigan drive, the Trojan offense would cut the lead back to six before halftime as junior K.J. Harden ran for a short score.

Early in the third quarter, Harrell took a short pass all the way for a huge gain into Trojan territory. This set up junior Tony Cooper to sprint up the middle for a touchdown run.

Coldspring cut the lead again with Parker scoring another six-pointer run late in the third.

A fumble in the fourth quarter by the Trojans would help set up another late Bulldog touchdown run by Williams. This would essentially put the game out of reach for Coldspring.

Parker would break away in the final seconds for a long touchdown run, along with a two-point conversion to pull Coldspring to within three points. However, the following onside attempt by Coldspring was unsuccessful.

The Bulldogs will play their final non-district match Friday at Hempstead to face the Bobcats.

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Lions win

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091822 lion footballZaylon Bogany (second from right) scoops a fumble and scores from 74 yards out. Courtesy photo

By Brian Besch
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Livingston football has entered the win column, scoring on their final drive to beat Spring Legacy 48-47 for homecoming Friday at Lion Stadium.

The Lions found themselves down 47-42 in a game that they led most of the way. They took possession at their own 35-yard line with 5:27 remaining in regulation. They would march 10 plays down to the Spring Legacy 5-yard line.

Facing a fourth-and-one on the 11th play of the drive, quarterback Ta McNeal (137 rushing yards) took the snap and ducked his head into the line. He would receive a momentum boost from teammate Landon Leggett, who shoved him from behind.

When McNeal landed, the arms of officials went into the air, signaling the Lions had taken a one-point lead at 48-47.

After missing the two-point conversion, Livingston (1-3) would hang on for the final 23 seconds to capture their first win of the 2022 season.

“That tested everything we have in our souls,” an exhausted, but satisfied Finis Vanover said after the lengthy struggle. “We told them all along that this was the best two-week period we’ve had since I’ve been here. Last week, we lost and we didn’t get down, but we played good enough to win. We killed ourselves with some penalties, but we played good enough to win because we practiced that way. We came back Monday and had the best three consecutive days with not one problem or homecoming or the parade — and we had the best practices we’ve had in four years.

“We told them before we left the locker room that God rewards people who earn things and do things the right way. For two solid weeks, they have done nothing but earn the right to have a chance to win. If a group of young men ever deserved to win, those guys have done what it takes. These guys (pointing to Legacy) are explosive as heck. They have some cats that can go in a hurry. We said all along that we have to get a two-score lead on them. They got right back in it with those explosive players. We had to fight our way back and do it again.”

After falling behind 7-0, the Lions reeled off three consecutive touchdowns. McNeal ran in from a yard out, Trendon Williams (115 rushing yards) sprinted for 85 yards and the longest play of the season to this point, and Zaylon Bogany scooped a fumble and rumbled for 74 yards to put the Lions up 21-7.

McNeal would score once more for a total of three on the night, Chevy Peters caught a 20-yard strike for a score from McNeal, and Connor Starr took a handoff in for 14 yards, adding to the Lions’ scoring tally.

The Titans (1-3) are a very athletic team, but undisciplined to the point of sloppy at times. The home team was able to take full advantage by piling up 360 rushing yards.

“Our kids blocked them beautifully and the backs ran like crazy,” Vanover said. “Ta did a great job seeing things and keeping us rolling. I couldn’t be more pleased. We showed up tonight and I think folks are going to see a new team from henceforth.

“The two of us got in the ring in the last two rounds and nobody ducked. We lined up and took every punch and came right back and had a follow-up punch ourselves. We took it down to drive it and kept it in bounds and used our timeouts wisely.

They played magnificently. The defense made great plays and they got killed, but those guys are talented. Nobody got down and nobody turned. It is a new bunch and we saw it happening last week. There was no question on Wednesday that we were about to win this game. I told them then that it was going to come down to the last possession or we would win by 30.”

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