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Rangers roll past NEMCC, stay unbeaten

Gardner Minshew threw four touchdowns passes, Justin Crawford accounted for four scores, and No. 10 Northwest Mississippi Community College cruised past Northeast Mississippi CC for a 51-14 win in its MACJC North Division opener Thursday at Bobby Franklin Field.

The win gave the Rangers their first 3-0 start since 2012 and put them one victory away from matching last season’s win total.

Minshew, who transferred to NWCC after spending the spring as a walk-on at Troy, finished 19 of 25 for 306 yards. NWCC led 21-0 after the opening quarter and 31-14 at the half, finishing with 603 yards of offense. The Rangers have outscored their first three opponents 119-44.

None of Minshew’s touchdown passes went for less than 22 yards with his first covering 62 to Crawford, who caught two touchdown passes and also rushed for a pair of scores. Crawford, the Rangers’ All-American running back, finished with 138 yards on the ground on just 11 carries and accounted for 244 all-purpose yards.

Wideout Ryan Golden finished with eight catches for 142 yards and was on the receiving end of Minshew’s other scoring tosses. His final touchdown grab, a 49-yarder, put the Rangers up 45-14 with 4:47 left in the third quarter.

NEMCC’s first touchdown didn’t come until midway through the second quarter as NWCC held the Tigers to 336 yards. Kicker Jim Speights added three field goals for the Rangers.

NWCC will return to action this coming Thursday with a trip to Itawamba CC. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.