No. 4 Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College never got its offense going Thursday night.
After making the long trek to Itawamba to play the Indians for the third time in four games, the Bulldogs’ offense sputtered in the 23-12 season-opening loss.
ICC freshman quarterback Dan Ellington opened the scoring from 2 yards out at the 10:35 mark of the first quarter.
With 6:21 remaining in the first, the Indians pushed their lead to 14-0 on a score from Kadarius Forside from 4 yards out. Kicker Zach Ellis gave ICC its largest lead of the night with a 31-yard field goal late in the first.
Gulf Coast’s Joshua Rowland broke the shutout early in the second quarter with a 40-yard field goal. A 1-yard pass-and-catch from the Bulldogs’ Kalen Whitlow to Lester Wells brought the score to 17-10 at halftime.
The second half ended up playing out much like the first with the exception of a safety late in the third quarter.
ICC padded its lead at the 8:59 mark of the fourth quarter on a 29-yard pass from Dan Ellington to Dontavis Bruce.
The win snapped a nine-game skid for ICC. More recently, it marked the first time in three consecutive games that the Indians were able to upset the Bulldogs. MGCCC defeated ICC in the 2015 regular-season finale and then eliminated the Indians from the MACJC playoffs.
Gulf Coast will need to bounce back quickly as it hosts No. 1 East Mississippi next Thursday. Like the Bulldogs, the Lions will be looking for their first win after falling 27-25 to Jones County Junior College.