MONTGOMERY -- Sophomore Ja’Quan Myles returned two kickoffs for touchdowns Friday night to lead Daphne High School to a key 26-20 Class 6A, Region 1 football victory over Saraland to land in the AHSAA Spotlight for Week 2 of the 2017 football season.
Trojans head coach Kenny King said it was a first for him in his coaching career. He said it also helped drive home something he has been preaching to his players since his arrival back at his alma mater as head coach last season.
“Our defense has been playing well all year, but our offense has been struggling,” King said. “Our special teams play has more or less been neutral. You must win two of those three areas in a game to have a chance to win the game.”
King said he did witness two kickoff returns in a single game once before – during his NFL career when the Devin Hester of the Chicago Bears returned two versus King and his Arizona Cardinals teammates.
“It was good to be on the other side this time,” King said. “We tell our players if everyone does their job then it is possible to return a kickoff for a touchdown. Still, when it happens it is still a shock. We had a lot of high fives and chest bumps on the sideline Friday night. We had to have both returns to win the game.”
Myles returned a kickoff in the second quarter 95 yards just moments after Saraland had taken the lead, and then opened the second half with an 82-yard return to score. He became just the 15th player in AHSAA history to return two kickoffs for touchdowns in a game, according to the AHSAA Record Book found online at http://www.ahsaa.com/Sports/Football/Football-Individual-Records.
Randolph’s Sam Kimel was the last player to accomplish the feat, returning two kickoffs versus DAR in 2016. Kimel’s 81 and 78-yard returns were sandwiched around a 92-yard kickoff return for a TD by DAR’s Brayden Lewis, earning both schools a spot in the record book. The back-to-back-to-back returns for TDs was just the second time that feat had been accomplished in NFHS history, according to the NFHS Record Book. Elba and Vincent were the first two schools to return three kickoffs in a row – in a Class 2A playoff game in 2011.
John Arnett of Coffee Springs was the first player reported to return two kickoffs for scores in an AHSAA game in 1971 versus J.U. Blacksher of Uriah in a 44-22 loss.
Myles’ performance overshadowed a strong effort by Saraland senior quarterback Jack West. The Stanford commitment was a perfect 15-for-15 passing in the second half and finished 25-of-30 overall for 192 yards and a touchdown in 26-20 loss.
In other highlights reported for Week 2:
SARDIS SHOCKS MADISON ACADEMY … AGAIN: Sardis edged Madison Academy 18-17 Friday night with Jake Ross scoring the game-winning touchdown on an end-around play with 1:08 remaining. The Lions of Coach Gene Hill trailed 17-0 midway through the third quarter but roared back to notch the region win over the Mustangs. Madison Academy has won 55 of its last 58 region games this decade – losing to Madison County 32-28 last year. Of the three losses, Sardis has won two. The Lions beat Madison Academy, 28-14, in the second week of the 2011 season, and the Mustangs started its 38-game region win streak the next week.
AGGIES NOTCH STIDHAM’S 100TH WIN: Running back Tristen Stewart rushed 23 times for 187 yards and three touchdowns, including two in the final quarter, to help Hamilton beat Haleyville 28-21. For head coach Rodney Stidham’s 100th career victory Stidham, 100-52 overall, got his first victory in 1996 in his lone season as head coach at Vina. He has been head coach at Hamilton since 2005.
CATHOLIC SNAPS STREAK WITH WIN: The Knights of Coach Aubrey Blackwell turned in their best defensive performance of his three-year coaching tenure to beat Montgomery rival and Vaughan Road next-door-neighbor Saint James 7-6. The victory was the first for Montgomery Catholic in the series since 2009 snapping a seven-game losing streak to the Trojans.
CROSSVILLE GETS RARE WIN OVER SCOTTSBORO: Crossville (2-0), coached by Miles Holcomb, scored 21 straight points to take a 21-0 lead, then held off a Scottsboro comeback to win 28-21. The victory was the first win by the Lions over the Wildcats since winning 28-14 in 1944. The two teams played for three years in a row from 1942-44 when Scottsboro was known as Jackson County. The series resumed in 2016 after 72 years with the Wildcats winning 63-21 last year. The series is now 2-2-1.
ALMA BRYANT SNAPS LOSING STREAK: The Hurricanes beat Robertsdale 29-22 to snap a nine-game losing streak. Ced Johnson rushed for 90 yards on 22 carries and scored three touchdowns to lead Alma Bryant. The win was also the first for new head Coach Doug Hoehn.
HATTON HONORS FIRST HOF CLASS: Before Hatton’s 45-6 loss to Madison County last Friday, the school recognized its first Hatton High Sports Hall of Fame inductees. The inductees included Rebecca Lee, Robyn Hutto, Rickey Johnson, Don Bradford and William Hagood, who was on the first Hornets team to play at night.
DECATUR TENNIS CHAMPS HONORED: The Decatur High School girls’ tennis team, which won the 2017 Class 6A state championship, was recognized at Ogle Stadium prior to the 55th annual Austin-Decatur football clash with the netters receiving their state championship rings.
EUFAULA’S TENNILLE SPARKS OT WIN: Running back Zy Tennille rushed for 182 yards and all four Eufaula touchdowns, including a 1-yard TD with 22 seconds left in regulation, as the Tigers nipped Booker T. Washington in overtime 29-22. His 7-yard run on the first play in OT set up his 3-yard game-winning TD. Eufaula, coached by Bryan Moore, extended is record in the series with BTW to 21-0 with the first overtime win in the series with the Tuskegee school, which dates back to 1991.
ARITON DEFENSE TURNS IN BIG PLAY IN OT: Ariton defensive back Josh Sullivan knocked down a Cottonwood pass on a two-point try in overtime to seal a 14-13 win over the Bears. Sullivan finished the night with nine tackles. He had one sack and another tackle for a loss and teammate Damien Aldridge added nine tacklers with four QB sacks for the Purple Cats of Coach Steven Kilcrease
LAUDERDALE COUNTY WINS ON LAST PLAY OF GAME: Tigers won on the last play of the game to beat West Morgan 21-15. The Rebels tied the game just 54 seconds earlier. It was the first time West Morgan head coach John Ritter, a former All-State QB and 2003 graduate of Lauderdale County, had returned to coach against his alma mater. Logan Mangum led LCHS with 224 yards rushing on 34 carries in the win.
COLBERT HEIGHTS NIPS CLEMENTS: Kevin Shaw’s 18-yard touchdown pass to Korey Saint on fourth down with 19 seconds to play lifted Colbert Heights to a 17-14 win over Clements. The Colts had taken a 14-10 lead with two fourth quarter scores.
BRETT NEZAT, COTTAGE HILL CHRISTIAN: Passed for 351 yards and five touchdowns in a 40-34 overtime loss to T.R. Miller. He was 19-of-25 with no interceptions.
AARON DOVE, FALKVILLE: The junior passed for 309 yards and three touchdowns in a 35-28 victory over Cleveland.
CADEN ROSE, BOB JONES: Was 18-of-29 passing for 277 yards and three touchdowns as the Patriots beat Madison city rival James Clemens 40-14. The sophomore also rushed for 57 yards on nine carries to finish with 334 total yards.
JAMES FOSTER, SIDNEY LANIER: The senior was 24-of-31 passing for 262 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Poets past Northview 26-6.
HATTON METZ, SCOTTSBORO: Completed 21-of-36 passes for 291 yards and two touchdowns in the Wildcats’ 28-21 loss to Crossville. The 291 passing yards ties Metz with Bo Nix and Anthony McCamey for the Scottsboro single-game record. Metz was a wide receiver prior to this season and had never played quarterback at any level before Coach Don Jacobs made the position change this season.
ETHAN WILSON, ANDALUSIA: Was 14-of-18 passing for 229 yards and four touchdowns in Andalusia’s 54-0 win over Monroe County.
WILL BAILEY, DAR: Completed 10-of-18 pass for 265 yards and three touchdowns in a 26-24 loss to North Jackson.
BO NIX, PINSON VALLEY: Completed 12-of-16 passes for 267 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 88 yards and a TD on four carries as the Indians beat Minor 48-8.
MICHAEL CROWDER, GARDENDALE: Passed for 261 yards and one TD and rushed for 91 yards and another score as the Rockets beat Pell City 53-7.
JAQUAN WILLLIAMS, JEFF DAVIS: The Volunteers’ quarterback was 13-of-15 passing for 251 yards and five touchdowns as JD beat Smiths Station 50-2.
C.J. YARBRBOUGH, TANNER: The quarterback passed for 219 yards and two touchdowns and also ran 28 yards for a score in the Rattlers’ 28-10 win over West End.
CAIDEN LIPSCOMB, COOSA CHRISTIAN: Passed for 214 yards and three touchdowns, all in the second quarter, as the Conquerors defeated Valley Head 25-6. Coosa Christian improved to 2-1 for the first time since 2009. Ashton Clemmons caught two of Lipscomb’s TD passes covering 43 and 14 yards.
KOURTLAND MARSH, MORTIMER JORDAN: Was a perfect 8-of-8 passing for 192 yards and two TDs and rushed for another score in the Blue Devils’ 41-14 win over Springville.
CARDAVION MYERS, PIEDMONT: Completed 9-of-14 pass attempts for 155 yards and two touchdowns (64, 29 yards) and rushed for 77 yards with two more scores (30, 5 yards) in the Bulldogs’ 61-14 rout of Glencoe. Teammates Lee Stanley and Braylon Cole rushed for 130 and 117 yards, respectively. Stanley scored once and Cole had three touchdowns in the second half.
PETER PARRISH, CENTRAL-PHENIX CITY: Completed 12-of-19 passes for 115 yards and rushed for 101 yards and a TD on 16 carries in a 34-28 win over Auburn.
TYREN DUPREE, CHEROKEE COUNTY: Completed 13-of-18 pass attempts for 178 yards and a 30-yard touchdown and added 65 yards and a two TDs rushing in the Warriors’ 27-21 loss at Hokes Bluff.
REECE SOLAR, ALABAMA CHRISTIAN: The quarterback was 11-of-19 for 128 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 140 yards and three more scores on 13 carries in the Eagles’ 38-12 win over Bullock County.
NATHAN LADNER, DECATUR HERITAGE: Passed for 103 yards and scored on a 2-yard run with 7:24 to play to give the Eagles a 2-point 28-26 victory over Hackleburg.
KEEFE WHITE, MONTGOMERY ACADEMY: Led the Eagles to a 34-22 win over Beulah with 328 yards rushing and two touchdowns. His long run was an 82-yard scoring scamper.
ROYDELL WILLIAMS, HUEYTOWN: Had a workhorse 31-carry effort for 282 rushing yards and two touchdowns in the Gophers’ 23-21 loss to John Carroll Catholic. He also had six catches for 59 yards and another TD for 341 total yards on the night.
ELLIOTT McELWAIN, HEWITT-TRUSSVILLE: Rushed for 170 yards on 25 carries and caught four passes for 45 yards in the Huskies’ 38-24 win over Gadsden City. He scored four touchdowns on runs of 19, 2, 5 and 4 yards.
DARRIAN MEADS, HOKES BLUFF: Rushed 30 times for 207 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Eagles (2-0) past Cherokee County 27-21 and to their first 2-0 start since 2009.
WILL FOREMAN, CLARKE COUNTY: Ran for 204 yards and two touchdowns in Clarke County’s 41-10 win over Bayside Academy.
CARLOS DAVIS, MUSCLE SHOALS: Rushed 18 times for 202 yards and four touchdowns as the Trojans downed Florence 47-29.
KADE ABBOTT, NORTH JACKSON: Rushed for 195 yards and a touchdown on a school-record 38 carries in North Jackson's 26-24 win over DAR.
K.J. HALL, HIGHLAND HOME: Led the Flying Squadron to a 55-8 win over Ellwood Christian with four touchdowns, 191 yards rushing on 12 carries and 75 yards receiving on two catches.
ASA MARTIN, AUSTIN: The senior running back ran for 188 yards and two touchdowns in Austin’s 49-0 victory, the Black Bears’ biggest margin of victory in the 55th playing of the city rivalry since 1982.
AMONTAE SPIVEY, CENTRAL-PHENIX CITY: Ran for 173 yards and four touchdowns on 12 carries as the Red Devils beat 7A rival Auburn 34-28. His scoring runs were 5, 43, 79 and 20 yards.
KOLBE BLUNT, DAVIDSON: Ran for 174 yards on 32 carries and scored three touchdowns as the Warriors beat Foley 24-7.
KEONTAY JONES, WENONAH: Had 16 rush attempts for 165 yards as the Dragons downed Woodlawn 38-12.
KOBE BELCHER, RAMSAY: Gained 160 yards rushing and scored one touchdowns in the Rams’ 22-14 victory over Shades Valley.
GENE SLEDGE, BROOKWOOD: Rushed for 156 yards and four touchdowns on 26 carries in a 45-26 loss to Paul Bryant.
JAMONTAVIOUS WOODS, GADSDEN CITY: Ran 19 times for 155 yards and a 66-yard TD in a 38-24 loss to Hewitt-Trussville.
JACOREY JACOBS, ST. LUKE’S EPISCOPAL: Rushed for 117 yards on 13 carries and caught two passes for 72 yards in a 57-12 win over Luverne. He scored two rushing touchdowns and had a third on a pass reception.
BRAYDEN LEWIS, DAR: Snagged seven receptions for 220 yards and three touchdowns in the Patriots’ 26-24 loss to North Jackson.
TIMOTHY HARRIS-EDWARDS, THOMPSON: Caught 10 passes for 165 yards and a 34-yard TD pass in the Warriors’ 63-22 victory over Tuscaloosa County.
DEMONTREZ BROWN, BOB JONES: Caught eight passes for 171 yards and two touchdowns as Bob Jones beat city rival James Clemens 40-14.
SETH WILLIAMS, PAUL BRYANT: Had three catches for 112 yards and a score as the Stampede beat Brookwood 45-26.
SHEDRICK JACKSON, HOOVER: Caught eight passes for 100 yards and a TD in the Bucs’ 31-21 win over Mountain Brook.
BRADLEY COOPER, NORTH JACKSON: The senior caught seven passes for 87 yards, including the game-winning score with 2:23 remaining as the Chiefs beat DAR 36-24. Cooper also rushed for 82 yards and a touchdown, returned a kickoff 79 yards for a touchdown and caused a DAR fumble that the Chiefs recovered with on DAR’s final series to seal the two-point triumph.
BRANDON SANDERS, JEFF DAVIS: Hauled in six passes for 115 receiving yards and two touchdowns in the Vols’ 50-2 win over Smiths Station.
C.J. PAYMON, MONTGOMERY ACADEMY: Led the MA defense with 21 tackles and an interception and also rushed for a TD on offense as the Eagles beat Beulah 34-22.
DREW ROGERS, LOCUST FORK: Had 18 tackles at linebacker and rushed for 108 yards and four touchdowns on 18 carries at fullback to lead the Hornets past Vinemont 44-6.
CORTEZ BROOKS, LEE-HUNTSVILLE:: Made 15 tackles and returned an interception 30 yards for a touchdown in a 45-0 win over Russellville.
ALLEN PURDUE, CALHOUN: The linebacker had 13 tackles in 51-0 loss to Goshen.
ANDRES FOX, MOBILE CHRISTIAN: Had 10 tackles, caused a fumble and recovered another miscue in the Leopards’ 27-0 win over Excel.
TYRONE HALL, THEODORE: Had nine tackles as the Bobcats’ defense limited Baker to just 57 total yards and two first downs in the 26-14 win.
CARSON CARVER, SAND ROCK: Recorded two interceptions, made five tackles and kicked a 27-yard field in a 17-3 Wildcat win over Westbrook Christian. He also punted twice for a 37.5-yard average in the all-around performance for Sand Rock.
YORK GAMBLE, SLOCOMB: Had 11 tackles with three quarterback sacks and also teamed with Adam Newton to force a fumble as the Red Tops beat Providence Christian 26-7. Newton also had 11 tackles.
JOSHUA MILLER, BESSEMER CITY: Recorded 10 tackles on defense and added 10 carries for 86 yards and three TDs on offense in a 54-26 victory over Selma.
ALFRED THOMAS, SIDNEY LANIER: The defensive end had nine tackles and two sacks to lead the Poets past Northview 26-6.
LUKE DORRIETY, GENEVA COUNTY: Returned an interception 51 yards for a touchdown and had nine tackles as the Bulldogs beat G.W. Long 34-7. Teammates Marquez Johnson and Tyler Reeves had 11 and nine tackles, respectively. It was the first win for Geneva County in the series since 2007.
ALEX WRIGHT, ELBA: Had nine tackles and returned a fumble for a touchdown to spark Elba to a 32-21 win over New Brockton.
JUSTIN JOHNSTON, CITRONELLE: Intercepted two passes, returning one for a touchdown, and also had seven tackles in a 22-20 win over Vigor.
TYLER ROBERTSON, SAINT JAMES: Intercepted two passes and recovered fumble in the Trojans’ 7-6 loss to Montgomery-Catholic.
KHALIL GRIFFIN, BOB JONES: The sophomore defensive back snagged his first career interception in the Patriots’ 40-14 win over James Clemens and returned it 37 yards for a touchdown.
DYLAN ROGERS, SPRING GARDEN: Returned an interception 40 yards for a touchdown in the Panthers’ 49-12 victory over Gaylesville.
ZAY BRITT, MUNFORD: Returned a punt 74 yards for one score, caught four passes for 137 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 49 yards and another TD as Munford beat Dadeville 50-15. He finished with 260 all-purpose yards.
GRAHAM PEPPER, WEST LIMESTONE: Returned a punt 50 yards for a touchdown and passed for two more scores in a 27-4 win over Priceville.
HUNTER SIMS, OAK GROVE: Returned a punt 35 yards for a touchdown in the Tigers’ 39-12 win over Holt.