Piggott took advantage of an early Lion miscue and turned the game into a 40-8 rout in a rain-soaked 3A-3 junior high conference contest Thursday night at Manila.
Manila forced the Mohawks into a punting situation on their first drive of the game, but an offsides penalty against the Lions kept the Piggott drive alive, as the Mohawks drove 70 yards to take a 6-0 lead on quarterback Logan Murray's one yard sneak. The two point conversion pass fell incomplete, but the Mohawks had a lead they would never relinquish with 1:33 left in the first quarter.
Piggott took advantage of another Lion miscue when Liska Holifield picked off a Dillon Burrow pass and returned it to the Manila 42 yard line on the Lion's first possession of the game. Piggott fullback Cody Mantz bolted 43 yards on the second play of the drive and the Mohawks went ahead 12-0 at the 7:52 mark of the second period.
Burrow put the Lions in business on the ensuing kickoff with a 30 yard return, setting Manila up at the 50 yard line. Burrow passed the Lions to the Piggott 29, but a fumble by Jordan Brewer two plays later was recovered by the Mohawks to end the threat.
Piggott seized the opportunity, marching 58 yards in nine plays, capped off by a four yard run by Mantz for the Mohawk's third score of the game. Mantz's two point conversion run was successful, and Piggott took a 20-0 lead into the dressing room at the half.
The Mohawks caught the Lions off guard to open the third quarter by recovering an onside kick at the Manila 41 yard line. Zach Redmon broke free two plays later for a 40 yard touchdown gallop and Mantz added the two point conversion to put Piggott up 28-0 with 7:13 left in the third quarter.
Manila finally got on the board on their first possession of the second half as Burrow hooked up with Shane Lee on a beautifully executed 55 yard touchdown pass at the 5:56 mark of the third period. Brewer scooted in with the two point conversion run to cut the Mohawk lead to 28-8.
Piggott ended any question of a Lion comeback on their next series by going 62 yards while eating up the remainder of the third quarter to take a 34-8 lead with just 26 ticks left in the period. Mantz and Redmon took turns chewing up yardage on the touchdown march, capped off by Mantz's 11 yard touchdown run. The two point conversion attempt failed.
Both teams failed to get anything going offensively on their next two possessions until Piggott finished off the night's scoring with a 41 yard touchdown run by Kain Haywood with just 1:00 to go in the game, setting the final score at 40-8.
"We came out and stopped them on the first drive, forcing a fourth and five, but we jumped offsides on the punt and things just seemed to go downhill after that," said Lion Coach Jason Durham. "We gave them new life. They went down and scored and we never seemed to recover after that. They played us real physical and we didn't match the intensity. They dominated the line of scrimmage and did a heck of a job putting pressure on our quarterback. We had open receivers all night long, but when you don't have time to throw to them it doesn't matter."
Piggott rolled up 287 yards of total offense, all on the ground, led by Mantz and Redmon who both went over the 100 yard mark. Mantz finished with 16 carries for 119 yards and three touchdowns while Redmon racked up 103 yards on 14 carries with one touchdown.
Burrow led Manila in rushing, carrying nine times for 23 yards, but the Lions had only 13 yards rushing on 16 attempts. Dylan Bogle rushed one time for seven yards while Tucker Miller had a pair of carries for six yards. Burrow finished the night 3-10 through the air for 73 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Lee led Manila in receiving with two receptions for 63 yards and a score while Brewer snagged one catch for 10 yards.
The Lions dropped to 3-5 overall and 2-4 in conference play. Manila will close out the regular season hosting Rivercrest Thursday night in a 7:00 kickoff