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Water Valley throttles Holly Springs in 2-3A opener

HOLLY SPRINGS — Coming off their heartbreaking loss to Winona last week the question was how would Water Valley respond?

The answer was an emphatic 43-0 win over Holly Springs on the road in both teams’ Region 2-3A opener.

With plenty of offense and a stifling defense, Water Valley (6-1, 1-0 2-3A) shook off their first loss of the season last week and made a potent Holly Springs offense ineffective.

“We were really banged up after two weeks of really physical football games,” Embry said. “The weather was really tough on us all week. It took us a while to get on our feet and get our timing down and stuff like that. It was a tough week because we had our bubble burst (last week) and we had to recover from that.”

The first score of the game came on the defensive side of the ball. Keldrick McIntosh picked off an errant Hawk throw for a 5-yard pick-six midway through the opening quarter for the early Blue Devil lead.

The rest of the first quarter saw the Water Valley offense continue to find their rhythm after an awkward week of practice.

It took only a quarter though, as the Blue Devils scored two more touchdowns in the second quarter. Both were passes from quarterback Blayne Clark to wide receiver Bud Tolbert. The first was 27-yards in length and the second was for 54 yards.

In the second half Jacob Truss passed for a touchdown and ran for a score while Dre McCray scored on a 15-yard run.

“We knocked the rust off in the first half,” Embry said. “At quarterback we’re still trying to get some consistency. Both of those guys bring different things and there’s competition and that’s a good thing. They’re both going to help us win a bunch of football games.”

The Blue Devil defense clamped down on a Holly Springs offense that was averaging over 40 points per game in their five wins. The Hawks (5-2, 0-1) never crossed midfield until the final drive of the game and were pinned inside their own 35 yard-line on most possessions.

After the interception in the first quarter, the Blue Devils caused a Holly Springs safety late in the fourth quarter.

“They’re a good offense and defensively we’re playing pretty good right now,” Embry said. “Anytime you give up (zero points) that’s a good sign you have a chance to win that one. Been pleased with them all year.”

Water Valley returns home to host M.S. Palmer on Friday.