228 Sports: (Rock’s Locks) Picking prime prep football games

September 30, 2022: Picayune Dante Dowdell (2) tries to keep his footing as Vancleave Martin Shaw (29) goes tor the tackle during the Picayune versus Vancleave game at Vancleave, Mississippi. Photo: Bobby McDuffie/228 Sports


We’re getting to Game Day a week early this week for eight teams in the “Southern Six”. The four local Region 4-6A games will take place tonight, while all other games will be played in the usual Friday night spot.

That’s giving us an extra night of prep football action in South Mississippi, which is always a good thing. With the extra night of games though, don’t panic because region games are widespread this week as Pass Christian and St. Stanislaus play their first league games of the season.

Rock’s Locks went a sparkling 12-1 last week and now stands 58-20 on the year for a winning percentage of 78 percent.

“Well I can’t sleep, I’ve been up all night….”

  1. East Central at Picayune (Game of the Week) — A battle of the unbeatens in Region 4-5A on Friday night pits the visiting Hornets against the home-standing Maroon Tide. Picayune is 6-0, and ECHS comes in at 5-0. On paper, this contest pits a pair of powerful rushing attacks in a battle for league supremacy, as Dante Dowdell and Chris Davis for the Maroon Tide collide with Eli Smith and the Hornets. Picayune has won 13 straight regular season games and 17 consecutive games overall, so we gotta stick with the defending state champs until somebody knocks them off….Picayune 35, East Central 14.
  2. Ocean Springs at Biloxi (Thursday) — Like Picayune, the Greyhounds put their 15-game regular season winning streak on the line in a battle for the top spot in Region 4-6A against the upstart Indians. Biloxi has vaulted itself directly into contention in this league race, and that won’t change just yet despite the outcome of this one. That’s a good thing for the Indians. Ocean Springs 31, Biloxi 17.
  3. D’Iberville at Pascagoula (Thursday) — Unlike the first two games we picked, the Panthers and the Warriors are on the other end of the spectrum in their region adventures. Both Pascagoula and D’Iberville are 0-2 in Region 4-6A, and neither can hardly afford another league loss in the postseason chase. I do believe, that unlike in Region 4-5A, there could possibly be a team in Region 4-6A that might sneak into the playoffs with four league losses. But going down 0-3 in region play just three weeks into league play is a sub-optimal situation for sure. Pascagoula 7, D’Iberville 6.
  4. Vancleave at George County — The Rebels return home to Gill-Martin Stadium at 0-5 for the first time in 10 years. Vancleave looks to rebound from its first loss of the season to unbeaten Picayune last week. Just like the game we just mentioned, the loser of this game will find itself spiraling down the standings in the region race. We think the Bulldogs bounce back this week in Region 4-5A play. Vancleave 27, George County 21.
  5. West Harrison at Gautier — The Gators welcome in the Hurricanes to Wallace Stadium in a fairly big game Region 4-5A game, with each coming off league wins last week. West Harrison is off to its best start in program history, but I don’t think the Gators are very impressed. Gautier looks to head into next week’s rivalry game with neighbor Vancleave on a roll. I believe they will. Gautier 34, West Harrison 20.
  6. Gulfport at Hancock (Thursday) — The Admirals, along with the aforementioned Ocean Springs and Biloxi, all sit atop the Region 4-6A race with 2-0 league marks entering this week. Obviously, either the Greyhounds or the Indians won’t be able to say the same next week, so we’ll have either one team alone in first place or a pair of teams knotted at the top. We think it’ll be two. Gulfport 24, Hancock 20.
  7. Moss Point at Pass Christian — The Tigers stand 0-6 on a season for the first time in 70 years. That 1952 squad was also the last one at MPHS to go an entire season with no wins and no ties. The Pirates were off last week, so this is their first Region 8-4A game of the season. Moss Point only has three chances left to snap its historic streak. Pass Christian 20, Moss Point 13.

A six pack to go:

Greene County 30, Stone 28

Bay Springs 27, Resurrection 17

St. Stanislaus 32, West Marion 28

Harrison Central 24, St. Martin 14

Poplarville 21, Lawrence County 13

Long Beach 2, Pearl River Central 0


Written by Curtis Rockwell

Curtis has almost three decades of experience at four different daily newspapers across South Mississippi, specializing in Sports and live Music.


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