LEIGHTON — Madison Academy had already secured first place in the region entering Friday night’s game at Colbert County, but there was plenty still on the line for the state’s sixth-ranked team.
The Mustangs checked off another accomplishment, as they completed Class 3A, Region 8 play unbeaten with a 42-0 decision at C.T. Manley Stadium.
“We certainly want to control 3A football and try to win every 3A game,” Madison Academy head coach Eric Cohu said. “Even though the game didn’t matter on paper, Colbert County came to beat us. We stepped up and met the challenge.”
Colbert County (6-3, 4-3) finished as the region’s fourth seed. A win against Madison Academy coupled with a Deshler loss to Clements would have earned the Indians third place.
The Mustangs (7-2, 7-0) scored four times in the first half, including three touchdowns in the second quarter, to take a commanding 28-0 halftime lead against the Indians.
Kemoni Miller opened the scoring with a 5-yard touchdown run that capped a 12-play, 64-yard drive on the game’s opening possession. Of the 12 total snaps, nine were running plays, with standout Kerryon Johnson getting the first four touches.
On the first play of the Mustangs’ next possession, quarterback Ashton Coward completed a deep play-action pass to Nicholas Haas for a 75-yard score that swayed the momentum permanently in Madison Academy’s favor. The long pass sparked a big second quarter for Madison Academy, which got two scores from Johnson in the period. The 6-foot-0, 185-pound sophomore, also a basketball standout for the Mustangs, returned a punt 75 yards for a touchdown and ran for a 2-yard score.
“Obviously, they have a very good football team with some outstanding players. Going into the game, we knew that we couldn’t give up any big plays and we couldn’t turn the ball over,” Colbert County head coach Dale Jeffreys said.
Haas caught another touchdown pass in the third quarter, and Miller ran in his second score with a 4-yarder midway through the fourth quarter. Miller finished with 100 yards on 11 carries, while Johnson had 46 yards on seven carries and caught one pass for 10 yards.
Ryan Carpenter rushed for a team-high 57 yards for the Indians. Tyler Lott followed with 50 more. Norris Warren had an interception for Colbert County, which hosts Class 4A Brooks next week in the regular-season finale.
The loss, the first shutout of the season, is the Indians’ third defeat in the past four games.
“Even though the score might not indicate it, I thought our group played hard for four quarters. We made some movement forward,” Jeffreys said. “I thought our offensive line played better tonight than it had all season, even though that didn’t equate into points.”