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Pryor Pirates make the big plays through the air for win over Destin Marlins

Tina Harbuck
The Destin Log

The Pryor Pirates scored four touchdowns on big plays to beat the Destin Marlins 28-12 in middle school football action.

"We just weren't in sync for most of the night. We just didn't fire on all cylinders," said  Destin Coach Mark Hinterthan as he walked off the field at Regatta Bay Thursday night.

"The offense didn't execute real well," he said, noting that Pryor had a big physical team.

"But there are some things we could have done ... mentally we just gave up big plays. We can't give up big plays against decent teams."

Pryor scored in the first minute of the game on a pass play. Quarterback Blake Peters, who completed eight of 12 passes on the night for 274 yards and four touchdowns, connected with Chad Russell on the second play of the game for a 53-yard touchdown strike. The point after attempt was stuffed, but Pryor led 6-0.

On Destin's first possession, the Marlins failed to gain any ground.

Destin's Austin McDowell carries the ball for some tough yardage against the Pryor Pirates. McDowell had 82 yards rushing for the Marlins in their 28-12 loss.

Pryor got the ball, but four plays later the Marlin defense knocked the ball loose and Owen Davis made the recovery for Destin.

Destin made one first down before turning it over on downs at midfield.

This time, Pryor reeled off another big play. Peters connected with Jaqual Stubbs for a 50-yard catch and run for the score. Pryor led 12-0 at the end of the first quarter.

At the start of the second, the Destin defense forced the Pirates to punt. The Marlins blocked the punt and Maddox Hayles scooped the ball up and ran it back for what would have been a TD. However, it was called back because of an illegal block by the Marlins.

Destin tried to punch it in the end zone but was stopped on the 9-yard line.

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The Pirates took over and was pushed back a yard on the first play. On a second-and-11, Peters found Stubbs, who took it down the right side of the field for a 92-yard score. The 2-point try was good and Pryor led 20-0 at the half.

Destin got the ball to start the second half and put together a big play of their own. Quarterback Wyatt Wainwright hit Tracen Trahan on a route for a 68-yard touchdown. The extra-point attempt failed for  a 20-6 game.

On Pryor's first possession of the second half, Destin knocked the ball loose and recovered it at midfield.

The Destin Marlins miss on a pass play on their first possession. In the second half, Tracen Trahan had a catch for a Marlin touchdown.

Destin's Austin McDowell, who finished the night with 82 yards rushing, picked up 41 yards on the first down. Two plays later, McDowell took it in from 8 yards out for the score. The 2-point conversion attempt failed. 

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Pryor scored one last time on another big play in the fourth quarter. Peters connected with Ellis Alloway, who broke through three or four tackles to take it 57 yards for the score. Peters found Stubbs in the end zone for the 2-point conversion.

"It was a tough night as far as mental football and execution of football. We just didn't play well," Hinterthan said.

With the loss the Marlins drop to 3-3 on the season. Destin will travel to Niceville on Nov. 12 to take on the undefeated Ruckel Rams.

"I thought we were well prepared this week for this team, but for some reason we didn't play as we practiced," Hinterthan said.