Ridgeland now 4-0 after cruising past Chattooga
The Ridgeland Panthers jumped out to a quick three-touchdown lead less than eight minutes into the game and never looked back as they coasted to a 38-7 Homecoming win over the Chattooga Indians Friday night at Painter and Bowers Field.
After forcing an Indian punt on its first possession, Ridgeland (4-0) needed just one play to score as quarterback Tanner Hill rolled left and found a wide open Stephon Walker for what turned into a 65-yard scoring strike.
The two would connect again on the Panthers’ second drive as Hill rolled right and found Walker in stride for a 43-yard TD pass on a third downand-11 play. After a poor Chattooga punt, Ridgeland’s third drive took just three plays as A’zavier Blackwell scored on a 19-yard run to make it 21-0 with 4:16 left in the opening quarter.
Another pick set up a 3-yard run by Jalyn Shelton 1:12 into the second period to add to the lead, but Chattooga (0-3) was finally able to get a march going as C.J. Martin found Devin Price on a TD pass, capping an 8:20 drive.
But Ridgeland would come right back downfield to get on the board again. Conner Middleton’s 36-yard field goal on the final play of the half gave the Panthers a 31-7 lead at intermission as they scored on all five firsthalf possessions,
The final touchdown came early in the third quarter as a third interception set up shop at the Chattooga 38. Two runs moved the ball inside the 15 and two plays later, Markeith Montgomery would race 11 yards to paydirt.
The Ridgeland starters exited the game after that as several younger players saw action in the second half.
Ridgeland finished with 269 yards on 34 rushing attempts. Shelton paced the ground attack with 97 yards on 16 carries. Montgomery had 51 yards on just four attempts, while Desmond Johnson went for 39 yards on four carries.
Jordan Hughley had a pair of interceptions, while Blackwell gave the Panthers a total of three on the night.
Hill completed 5-of11 passes for 130 yards. Walker had 108 yards on just two catches, while Middleton was 5-for-5 on PAT’s, in addition to his field goal.
The Panthers will have this Friday off as they get set to open Region 6-AAAA play with a huge game at Northwest Whitfield on Sept. 22.
Jordan Hughley avoids a tackle after making an interception during Friday’s game with Chattooga. Hughley had two of Ridgeland’s three picks in a 38-7 win. (Photo by Bambara Aven/www.bbaven.com)