Multiple turnovers proved too much for East Central to overcome on the road Friday night.
An East Central pass missed its target in the end zone as time expired, giving Purvis a 34-27 victory.
East Central junior running back Tony Brown had another big performance on the ground, carrying 41 times for 293 yards and four touchdowns.
"He's gotten better every week," East Central coach Seth Smith said. "He's gotten better, tougher. He understands his role more. He's been doing a fantastic job.
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Brown entered Friday night leading the nation in rushing according to MaxPreps. He now has 186 carries for 1,687 yards and 18 touchdowns this season.
Brown had a 55-yard touchdown run to cut the Purvis lead to 34-27 with 1:59 left and the Hornets recovered the following onside kick.
The Hornets pushed the ball 30 yards to the Purvis 18, but the final try at the end zone came up short.
East Central (3-3) begins Region 8-4A competition when it travels to take on Moss Point next week.
"I told our kids that we've lost three games to playoff teams in 4A, 5A and 6A and all them were by a touchdown or less," Smith said. "In all three losses, we had four turnovers. You're not going to turn it over and beat a good team."