Friday night’s Region 4-6A tilt between No. 3 D’Iberville and No. 10 George County was decided over a stretch of four plays.
The Warriors controlled the game early, but the Rebels scored twice early in the third quarter to edge ahead. D’Iberville looked to respond but disaster struck. Again and again and again.
Three times in four plays the Warriors turned the ball over — first on an interception and then on two fumbles — and each time the Rebels cashed in, eventually routing D’Iberville 55-21.
“We totally imploded,” D’Iberville coach Eric Collins said. “I give credit to George County. They came out tonight, played harder than us and played better than us. The bottom line is, in our offense we try to keep them from having possessions. Once you turn the ball over and give them all those possessions, that was the ballgame. Anybody who has watched us knows we cannot play like that.
“If we get behind the chains or turn the football over, we’re not going to win many games.”
Heading into the game, Collins had circled George County quarterback LaRaymond Spivery and his top targets, Tyrese Fryfogle and Dwan Williams, dubbing them the “fearsome threesome.”
After Friday night, the nickname may need to be expanded to include a fourth Rebel.
While Spivery completed 32 of 46 passes 390 yards and four touchdowns, receiver Kaleb Gentry really sparked the Rebels’ rally.
The slot receiver caught three touchdowns of 35, 34 and 28 yards, including the Rebels’ final score of the first half on a receiver pass thrown by Fisher Ray. D’Iberville’s defense bit on the toss backwards from Spivery to Ray, and the receiver lobbed a pass over the lone Warriors defender to Gentry with 10 seconds remaining.
“We ran it against Harrison Central two weeks ago. It worked then, too,” George County coach Matt Caldwell said. “It was a big play for us. Kaleb is a guy who gets overshadowed because of Dwan and Tyrese but had a huge game for us.”
The senior finished with eight receptions for 124 yards.
D’Iberville (4-3, 2-1) opened the game with a 14-6 lead on two 1-yard touchdown runs by quarterback Michael Kozlowski sandwiched around an 18-yard touchdown run by Spivery.
George County’s trick play on Ray’s receiver pass pulled the Rebels (4-3, 2-1) within 14-13 just before halftime.
D’Iberville’s Micah Booker opened the second-half scoring on a 6-yard touchdown — capitalizing on a short field after a poor snap on a George County punt — to push the Warriors’ lead to 21-13.
George County took the lead 26-21 after Spivery connected with Williams on a 19-yard touchdown and Gentry for a 34-yard score.
That’s when the wheels fell off for D’Iberville.
After George County’s Jamar Jackson intercepted Kozlowski, Spivery and Gentry hooked up again — this time from 28 yards out.
The Warriors fumbled two plays later and the Rebels struck again on a 30-yard touchdown from Spivery to Fryfogle to push their lead to to 41-21.
Then after another fumble, it took the Rebels just six plays to score again. J.J. Lawrence’s 2-yard touchdown run extended the George County lead to 48-21.
Ja’vion Riley scored the Rebels’ last touchdown in the final minute on a 2-yard run.
Fryfogle led George County’s receivers with eight receptions for 151 yards and a touchdown. Williams finished with five catches for 75 yards and a touchdown.
The Rebels’ McKinnley Jackson and Dylan Lawrence recovered the Warriors’ fumbles.