GAUTIER — Junior Trey Irving performed well in his return from injury as Gautier’s starting quarterback, leading the Gators to a comfortable 27-7 home win over the visiting Moss Point Friday night.
Irving, the cousin of former Prep All-American GHS QB Kaden Irving, had 279 yards through the air and three touchdown passes on the night. The win brings Gautier to 2-2 on the year while Moss Point falls to 1-3.
Senior Kelvin Beavers, who spent the last two games filling in at quarterback, was moved back to his normal role at wide receiver. He hauled in eight catches for 137 receiving yards and two touchdown catches.
Irving’s first drive back under center was capped off with a 34-yard touchdown pass to receiver LJ Bennett to give GHS an early 6-0 lead. Later on in the first quarter, Irving and the Gators struck through the air again with a 24-yard touchdown pass to Beavers. A successful two-point conversion from running back Soloman Baggett put Gautier up 14-0.
Chequin White, starting quarterback for the Tigers, was injured in the first quarter and taken out of the game. Junior KeVon Ford was called in to take over for Moss Point. Ford was able to put Moss Point on the board in the second quarter by running in a touchdown himself from 11 yards out, cutting Gautier’s lead to 14-7.
Irving connected with Beavers again on a 48-yard touchdown throw to give the Gators a 21-7 lead going into halftime.
The Tigers were finally able to slow down Irving, wrangling an interception off the hands of a receiver, but were unable to capitalize on the turnover.
The only points in the entire second half were scored by Gautier’s special teams unit. as senior linebacker Jamal Barnes scooped up a blocked punt and ran it in for a touchdown. This brought the game to its final score of 27-7.
Moss Point still has the edge in the series between the two teams historically, with a 12-7 record against Gautier. However, the Gators have now won the last three meetings between the two teams.
The Gators bounced back from a heart-breaking 28-27 loss to rival Pascagoula last week, a decision in which GHS was up 20-0 in the first half before watching the Panthers rally. Gautier now goes into their bye week with a win. Their next matchup will come on the 29th when they visit the Columbia Wildcats.
Moss Point, which was coming off its first win under new head coach John Feaster, look to find a way back in the win column as they travel to West Harrison next Friday night.