MGCCC’S Jackie Matthews and Chance Lovertich named All-Americans

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There’s something ironic about putting personal goals aside for the good of the team that often lends itself to individual recognition as a result of collective success.

In this case, Mississippi Gulf Coast winning a national championship is providing some of that extra love.

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Today, sophomore Safety Jackie Matthews and sophomore Quarterback Chance Lovertich were both named NJCAA All-Americans.

Matthews, a West Virginia commit, is a first-team selection, having led the Bulldogs with six interceptions, good for fifth in the country.

Lovertich is a second-time selection that just broke the school record for total offense with more than 2,800 yards and graduates with a perfect 18-0 record as a starter at Perk.

Together, the duo led the Bulldogs to a 24-13 win over Lackawanna in last week’s National Title Game, the exclamation point on the program’s 12-0 dream season.

News 25 caught up with Head Coach Jack Wright during Saturday’s 5A State Championship game in Hattiesburg and he confirms there is no ‘I’ in team. “We tried from day one to get the guys to put their own goals aside, their own agenda aside, and buy into being a team. And what our guys did this year went above and beyond that. They really bought into each other. They bought into the message of hey, let’s do this together. Let’s try to do something special this year. They did that. Just a great group of guys, and they really bought into each other.”

MGCCC now has five football national championships.

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A native of Pass Christian and a St. Stanislaus alum, Jeff Haeger comes to News 25 from right in our backyard. He most recently spent more than three years working as the sports reporter for WHLT-TV in Hattiesburg, where he provided extensive coverage of his alma mater, The University of Southern Mississippi. At Southern Miss, Jeff was a member of the Honors College and graduated with a B.A. degree in Broadcast Journalism with a minor in Spanish. He also wrote for USM's award-winning school newspaper, The Student Printz, where he won first place for Best Sports Story in 2013. Jeff loves to travel, and is excited to get back on the water to reunite with his family. In his spare time you can find Jeff spending time with his friends, and maybe even winning a fantasy football league. For sports stories contact Jeff at jhaeger@wxxv25.com.