It was a night of firsts for Pass Christian High School last week when the football team took down Purvis 35-20 in the first round of the 4A playoffs.
Pass Christian had never won a playoff game before that 15 point win. At the center of that is a quarterback who can arguably be viewed as the most improved player in the entire state, but for now, he’s our ‘WXXV Student Athlete of the Week.’
First year Head Coach Black Pennock came into Pass Christian with a plan, hoping to enact change for a program coming off a disappointing 1-9 season. Now, just months later, it appears he’s done just that, helping lead the Pirates to a victory that will go down in the Pass Christian record books. “Just the ability for guys to believe in us and what our program stands for, and what we’re trying to do and the change we’re trying to make and the culture and all of that. For them to see that come to fruition was the most exciting to get to see our players experience that.”
It’s not unreasonable to say that Pennock has changed the landscape of Pass Christian football for the foreseeable future, but it doesn’t take just one. Fourth year starting Quarterback Dustin Allison has fully embraced the change and has emerged as the leader of the new and improved Pass Christian football team. “When he first got here, we stayed after a lot and worked on it, and stayed on the board meeting,” said Allison
Pennock said, “He was excited when I came in and it showed in his work ethic and his ability to prepare day in and day out for practice and being able to get himself ready to mentally be able to handle what we were gonna throw at him.”
In the Pirates first ever playoff win, Allison controlled the game, throwing for over 220 yards and four touchdowns. He also didn’t shy away from the ground game, running for 53 yards and one score. “Our game plan last week was to come out and get the ball to our receivers fast and let them work on the outsides and let them get their space and run up.”
While a playoff win in itself is enjoyable, being able to present Pass Christian High School with that first playoff win, that’s just a different feeling. “It means a lot, this community, the community needed it a lot from having losing records in the past to finally getting that playoff win, it’s just bringing the culture back.”
Allison and the Pirates hope to continue their run on Friday night when they travel to take on the undefeated South Pike Eagles.