Tuesday, November 12, 2019






Emmanuel Henderson Returns his 6th Kickoff for a TD to Tie the AHSAA Single-Season State Record

AHSAA Special Teams Spotlight

HARTFORD – Calling Geneva County High School sophomore Emmanuel Henderson a kick return specialist doesn’t quite tell it all. Coach JimBob Striplin’s explosive all-purpose back had 187 yards in kickoff returns, including returning one for a 70-yard touchdown, in the Bulldogs’ 70-51 loss to Daleville. The kickoff return for a TD was his sixth of the season – tying the state single-season record set by Richmon Singletary of Elba in 2018 and earning Henderson the AHSAA Special Teams Spotlight for Week 8.
The six kickoff returns for TDs puts his name in some tall company – like David Palmer of Jackson-Olin and Steve Coleman of Pike County, two kick return specialists who earned back-to-back Mr. Football Awards from the Alabama Sports Writers Association in 1989 and 1990. Henderson set the single-game kick-return yardage mark earlier this season with 252 yards and TDs of 99 and 80 yards in a 54-49 loss to Ariton.
     The Bulldogs’ star runner had had 21 rush attempts for 153 yards and three touchdowns covering 38, 26 and 9 yards versus Daleville and added two pass receptions for 35 yards to finish with 375 all-purpose yards and four scores . Daleville’s Jalen White, who earned the AHSAA Offensive Spotlight with 465 yards rushing and seven touchdowns, finished the game with 748 all-purpose yards in the same game.
    His sixth kickoff return this season pushed him past a group of five that have had five kickoff returns for scores in a single season. Among they is Peyton Higgins of defending Class 1A state champion Mars Hill Bible. He accomplished that feat in 15 games last season. Also with five kickoff returns in a single season are Javin Thatch of Tanner (2011); Brandon Hale of Lexington (1998); Jason Wilkins of Shelby County (1997); and Steven Reese of Florala (1997).
     The AHSAA’s most famous kick returner, Jack Golson of Fort Deposit, set a national record in 1950 by returning six punts for TDs in a 61-13 win over Loretto for Lowndes County High School. He had four in the first quarter covering 65, 50, 90 and 75 yards, and added two more (75 and 73) yards later in the game to close out the game with an NFHS record 428 punt return yards in a single game.
    Several other outstanding special team efforts were also reported from last week’s slate of games, including Piedmont’s Jakari Foster, who sped 86 yards on the opening kickoff for a touchdown as the unbeaten Bulldogs (8-0) clinched the Region 6 crown with a 52-14 win over B .B. Comer. It was the second time this season Foster has returned the opening kickoff for a score. He also caught a 29-yard TD pass from quarterback Jack Hayes in the win.
     Also reported were:
CAL HIGDON, BRIARWOOD CHRISTIAN: Intercepted a fourth-quarter pass and blocked a field goal on the game’s final play to secure a 21-20 victory over Ramsay.

JAYLIN PETERSON, RAMSAY: Returned a kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown in loss to Briarwood Christian.

DAVIS WINGATE, EUFAULA: Booted two field goals of 36 and 30 yards, converted both extra-point kicks, had a kickoff for a touchback and punted three times for a 36.0-yard average in the Tigers’ 20-7 win over Carver-Montgomery. Two of the punts were downed inside the 20-yard line.
KEION JACKSON, DALE COUNTY: Had an 80-yard kickoff return for a touchdown that sparked a 29-point second-half rally for the Warriors in a 39-30 come-from-behind win over Headland. Dale County overcame 30-10 deficit to clinch a Class 4A state playoff spot. Teammate Christian Herandez kicked a 44-yard field goal and was 2-of-2 on extra points in the win.
CAMDEN SKIPPER, SCOTTSBORO: Blocked an extra-point kick and had six tackles as the Wildcats beat Madison Academy 21-12.
WILL EDWARDS, WESTBROOK CHRISTIAN: Kicked a 23-yard field goal and five extra points as the Warriors beat Woodland 45-15.
ANBRE LEEK, CEDAR BLUFF: Returned a punt 57 yards for a touchdown and also had two catches for 84 yards and a score in the Tigers’ 40-6 win at Ider.

JAVAR STRONG, MUSCLE SHOALS: Scooped up a blocked punt and raced 25 yards for a touchdown in a 49-21 victory over Athens.

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