Picayune Maroon Tide facing West Point in rematch of 2019 5A Title Game
In December of 2019, the Picayune football program went on a bad first date, but after doing a couple years of soul searching, the Maroon Tide has finally decided to give West Point a second chance.
Except in this case, dinner is the pre-game meal and the movie is the 5A state title game, starring Picayune and West Point for the second time in three years in the same stadium.
The region 4 champs went through Hattiesburg, Brookhaven, and Laurel to get back to this point led by the state’s third-leading rusher Dante Dowdell with more than 2,400 yards.
The last time the Maroon Tide and Green Wave did battle in Hattiesburg, West Point came out on top 38-26, crushing Picayune’s dream of a perfect 15-0 season for outgoing Head Coach Lee Dodd.
Now, it’s up to Head Coach Cody Stogner and company to right all those wrongs as the Tide keeps rising closer to its first gold ball since 2013. “These seniors now were just sophomores then. We have a lot that actually played in that game, so they’re hungry. They’re hungry that we were able to get back, and they’re excited that it is West Point because they feel like maybe there’s possibly a chance to have some revenge. But they know it’s not going to be easy. The work we’re putting in this week is going to all have to all come together come Saturday night.”
Right tackle/ Defensive tackle Isaiah Evans said, “First thing I was thinking was I’m ready to get this revenge, ready to get it back. State championships, you don’t get that that often. And it was different because I wasn’t a starter. I didn’t get much playing time. So, this one means a lot more to me because I’m a starter. I’m making a big impact on it. So, this one definitely has a lot more meaning, but the feelings are mutual for both championships. You don’t get that very often.”
13-1 Picayune and 11-0 West Point kick things off at 7 p.m. Saturday from USM’s M.M. Roberts Stadium in Hattiesburg.