Decatur, Miss. - The Northeast Mississippi Community College football program is hitting the road for its final tune up before Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges (MACJC) North Division play begins next week.
The Tigers visit East Central Community College on Thursday, September 8 for the first meeting between the two schools in five years. Kickoff is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. at Bailey Stadium.
Those that cannot travel with Northeast can watch the contest live and in high definition on NEMCCTV. Log onto www.nemcctv.com on any computer, smartphone or tablet starting at 6 p.m. for the pregame show.
The Northeast Broadcasting Network also includes Booneville based radio station WBIP. An audio simulcast featuring Jody Presley and Carter Smith, the Voices of the Tigers, can be heard on 99.7 FM and AM 1400 on your digital dial.
It is the beginning of a pivotal three-game stretch away from the City of Hospitality for the Tigers. Northeast does not return to Tiger Stadium until its annual homecoming date on September 29.
The Tigers have found success in enemy territory recently. Northeast has won two of its last three road games, including victories at Coahoma Community College and Pearl River Community College during the latter half of last season.
Several playmakers got the chance to showcase their talents during the Tigers' opening triumph over Pearl River. A total of six backs had at least one carry against the Wildcats while seven receivers caught passes as well.
"You don't know who's going to have that spark," said Northeast head coach Greg Davis. "All the running backs add something a little different and also our quarterback running game is always there. Our receivers played well and executed when they needed to."
Water Valley's L.J. Hawkins started his final campaign at the two-year level with an outstanding performance versus Pearl River that featured team-highs of five catches, 49 yards and the go-ahead touchdown.
Brenden Williams of Birmingham, Ala., made his Northeast debut a memorable one with a game-best 14 takedowns. That was the third highest total during the first week of action in the Magnolia State.
Reigning MACJC All-State selection Demarcus Rogers of Tupelo and Meridian's Takari Brooks were outstanding as well with nine tackles each from their spots at linebacker and defensive back, respectively.
The Warriors lost to Holmes Community College by a 48-40 margin last week in a high-powered affair. East Central compiled 428 yards of offense and averaged six yards per carry, which currently ranks ninth best in the entire country.
Coahoma transfer Dominic Marino guides the Warriors offensively from the quarterback position. He completed 19 passes for 223 yards with five touchdowns through the air compared to zero interceptions.
Freshman Antonio Gibson was his top target with seven catches, 63 yards and two scores. Marino also kept the pigskin 11 times for 61 yards and was the second best rusher for his squad.
Cedrick Snow paced East Central defensively with 10 stops. The Warriors (0-1) had seven tackles for loss overall against the Bulldogs, including two from sophomore lineman Brad Horne.
East Central forced two turnovers in its lid lifter just like the Tigers. Eric Barnes returned one of two fumble recoveries by the Warriors eight yards into the end zone for a touchdown.
Northeast has captured two straight wins against East Central, including a 40-27 decision during the most recent head-to-head contest in 2011. The Warriors have the advantage in the all-time series 21-11.