Gulf Coast could have had a relaxing weekend.
Instead, after a 28-14 loss at Jones County Junior College in Ellisville on Thursday night, the Bulldogs will have to wait until Saturday to learn their playoff fate.
Had MGCCC (5-4, 4-2) won, it would have clinched a playoff berth. With the loss, Gulf Coast’s future rests in the hands of East Central (4-4, 4-1) and Copiah-Lincoln (5-3, 3-2).
As long as the schools don’t end up in a three-way tie, Gulf Coast will make the postseason, opening at East Mississippi. However, if ECCC loses to Southwest and Copiah-Lincoln beats Pearl River, the Bulldogs’ season is over.
Thursday night was a rough way to finish the regular season for Gulf Coast.
Jones County’s Scottie Phillips opened the scoring with a 12-yard touchdown run early in the game. MGCCC responded mid-way through the second quarter with a 27-yard touchdown run by T’Rod Daniels. It was all JCJC (6-3, 3-3) after that, however, as the Bobcats ripped off 21 unanswered points to build a 28-7 lead.
Gulf Coast’s other touchdown came late in the game on Larry Sisson’s 15-yard pass to Brandon Martin.
Sisson finished with 24 of 40 passing for 319 yards. GeVonte Jones and Daniels rushed for 77 and 68 yards, respectively.
Martin and Larry Nance each had six receptions and Alex Barrow and Lester Wells had five apiece. Martin had a game-high 98 yards receiving.
JCJC’s quarterback and running back tandem of Detric Hawthorne and Phillips gashed the Bulldogs. Hawthorne, the Bobcats’ quarterback, rushed for 99 yards and two touchdowns and Phillips ripped off 178 yards on 29 carries and one touchdown.
There was plenty of next-level interest in Thursday’s contest. According to MGCCC’s Twitter account, LSU interim coach Ed Orgeron and Arkansas coach Bret Bielema were both in attendance.