The Biloxi Indians on Friday improved their prospects for a playoff berth with a 27-7 victory over the Hancock Hawks.
Hancock (4-6) was eliminated from playoff contention.
The Indians converted four Hancock fumbles into 21 points on the evening.
“I though we made enough plays in the second half,” Biloxi coach Bobby Hall said. “Hancock fought really, really hard and I commend them for it.”
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Hancock coach Rocky Gaudin felt the game hinged on a few plays.
“Too many mistakes and big plays,” he said. “I wanna see how we respond to this next week in our last home game.”
The Indians opened the scoring in the first quarter when a bad snap on a Hancock punt was downed at the 15.
Three plays later, quarterback Brodie King scored on a 10-yard run. The point-after was missed.
Biloxi extended its lead to 13-0 in the second quarter by marching 96 yards on 11 plays to hit paydirt.
Tim Jones scored on a 15-yard reverse at the 7:54 mark of the quarter to cap the drive.
Hancock answered with a 15-play drive that ended with a 22-yard touchdown pass from Steven Good to Brooks Rayburn with just 2:12 to play in the half.
Elliot Nolan added the point-after and the Indians’ lead was 13-7 at halftime.
Hancock then embarked on a 15-play drive that reached the Indian five to start the third quarter. The Hawks, however, fumbled and Tyler Price recovered it at the three.
After a few first downs, Biloxi faced a third-and-24 near midfield. King connected with De’Angelo Mayers for 29 yards and a big first down. Biloxi would punch it in a few plays later when Nick Ross scored on a five-yard run to give the Indians a 20-7 lead with 10:02 to play.
“Those two plays conversion — were the biggest plays for us,” Hall said.
“You just can’t give up that conversion in a one possession game,” Gaudin said.
Hancock fumbled again two plays later, and once again, it was Price who recovered.
The turnover led to a three-yard touchdown run by King to ice the game 27-7 with 4:28 to play.
King completed 20 passes for 157 yards on the evening. He rushed for 36 yards and two scores.
For the Hawks, Good completed 15 of 24 passes for 239 yards and a score. Marquis Cherry led all rushers in the game with 72 yards. The Hawks will finish their 2016 season next week at home against George County.
Biloxi will face Gulfport in a rivalry game to determine a 6A state playoff berth.
“We are going to go down there,” Hall said. “I’m not sure if we punched our ticket tonight, but I’m proud of our team.”