Booneville, Miss. - The Northeast Mississippi Community College special teams unit was extraordinary once again during the final contest at Tiger Stadium this season.
The Tigers combined to accumulate over 300 return yards for the second consecutive week. But Itawamba Community College won the matchup between the two rivals with a 52-14 decision on Thursday, October 8.
Donta Armstrong continued to showcase his outstanding agility for Northeast. He fielded six kickoffs for 159 yards, which brought his total returns over the past two games to a phenomenal 457 yards.
The reigning Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges (MACJC) Special Teams Player of the Week grabbed the opening kick of the matchup at the 10-yard line and raced down the home sidelines for 84 yards to give the Tigers a first-and-goal situation.
Kendrick Doss turned the excellent field position into points on Northeast's inaugural play from scrimmage with a six-yard touchdown run. It was the team-high sixth rushing score of the campaign for the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) transfer.
The Tigers held the lead for a majority of the first quarter before Devin Bush brought the tilt into a stalemate with an eight-yard scamper into the end zone at the 2:52 mark.
A quarterback sneak across the goal line by Kwadra Griggs and Grant Kimberlin's short touchdown reception allowed the Indians to take a 21-7 advantage into the locker room.
Itawamba extended its lead to 35-7 within the initial two minutes of the second half with a Griggs touchdown connection to Isaiah Howard and on Kadarius Forside's 20-yard score.
Khalid Kornegay setup Northeast's final scoring drive of the game midway through the third. He caught a missed field goal by Zach Ellis in the end zone and sprinted 67 yards into enemy territory.
It took Tiberias Lampkin only two carries to cover the final 33 yards. His third score of the year accompanied with Austin Holloway's extra point cut the Tigers' deficit to 35-14 with 5:35 remaining in the period.
Kornegay added a career-long 79-yard kickoff return to his resume in the fourth. The Tulsa, Okla., native also had a team-high 44 receiving yards to account for 190 all-purpose yards overall.
"I just had a good group of guys rallying around me," said Kornegay. "All I had to do was run honestly. That's the easy part if you look closely. The guys that were blocking up front, that was the hard part."
The Indians (4-3, 3-2) concluded their scoring for the evening with a pair of touchdowns on the ground from Dontavis Bruce and a 27-yard field goal off the boot of Ellis.
Jaylon Fair was the top target for Northeast's signal callers with a career-high six catches for 42 yards. Doss recorded for 108 yards combined between passing and rushing as well.
Colton Meadows had an outstanding evening defensively for the Tigers (1-6, 1-4). He set a new personal best with nine stops and also tallied 1.5 tackles for a loss of five yards.
"Earlier in the week the coaches pushed me to work a little harder so I had to step up and be a leader," Meadows said. "Overall, my hands have gotten better. That has helped me progress into more of an elite player."
Anthony Rush remained solid alongside Meadows in the trenches. He notched a game-high 12 tackles and now has 25 takedowns over his last two appearances at Northeast.
"Both of them played well," said Tigers head coach Greg Davis. "That's what they're supposed to do. They go out there and create havoc and make plays up front. They gave an extremely good effort."
The Tigers complete the non-division portion of their schedule on Saturday, October 17 at Pearl River Community College (2-5). Kickoff is slated for 2 p.m. at Dobie Holden Stadium in Poplarville.