Rains spoils Mount Vernon's home opener
By RANDY SHORTNACY | News-Telegram Correspondent

Oct. 7, 2006 - MOUNT VERNON - The Mount Vernon Tigers finally made it home for their first game at Tiger Stadium. It was homecoming and also the home debut of new head coach Charles Swann. However the outcome was not what the Tiger faithful wanted as the Rains Wildcats came in and took a 34-27 win.

Mount Vernon came out and looked strong at the start as the offensedrive down and scored on its opening possession.

Rains (4-1) helped the Tigers on the opening possession as the Wildcats were flagged for roughing the punter, giving the Tigers a first-and-10.Then on the very next play, Tiger quarterback Zach Jaggers found Chris Bonner for a 71-yard touchdown pass. The Landry McGonagill point-after was good and Mount Vernon had the early 7-0 lead, which held up for the remainder of the quarter.

Jaggers came back and kicked off the second quarter by throwing his second touchdown pass, this time finding Kolton Stoker out of the backfield for 21 yards. McGonagill's kick was good, and with 11:45 left in the half the Tigers jumped out to the 14-0 advantage.Jaggers finished the night hitting 11-of-22 passes for 296 yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed for one TD.

Rains offense then got moving and looked to be getting in sync when Aaron Potts ended a four-play drive covering 73 yards with a 53-yard run.Derek Hurst's point-after was no good and the Wildcats had cut the Tiger lead to eight.

Then it was the Wildcat defense coming up big as Johnathan Beasley intercepted Jaggers and returned the ball to the Tigers' 16-yard line.Two plays later Mandell Christian walked in from 12 yards out. The try for two was no good, and with 8:32 left in the first half the 14-point lead once held by the Tigers was down to two, 14-12.

Jaggers and the Tiger offense were not finished putting points on the board in the first half. With 5:27 left in the opening half, Jaggers scored his first rushing touchdown on the evening, taking it in from 1-yard out on a crucial fourth down-and-goal. It capped off a six-play drive that covered 74 yards and put the Tigers up 21-12 at the half.

Rains didn't quit, though. After a muffed punt by MV's Kyle Clayton, the Wildcats were again sitting pretty as Potts set up shop at the Tiger 22. Itonly took Rains four plays to punch it in as Hurst would plunge in from the 2-yard-line. The two-point conversion was good and the Tiger lead had been cut to seven.

Then with time expiring in the third, Rains did it again. Potts strolled in from 1-yard out. The point-after from Hurst split the uprights, and the scored was all locked at 27-all.

The Wildcats took control of the fourth by keeping the ball out of the hands of the Tiger offense. And with 5:36 left in the game, Potts did it again for Rains, this time from 4 yards out. Hurst's point-after brought the score to 34-27.It culminated a 12-play drive that covered 75 yards, using up 6 1/2 minutes of the final quarter. The Wildcat defense then shut down the Tigers on the next possession and took over on downs.

The loss drops the Tigers to 2-4 on the season with their district opener coming next week at home as they host the Atlanta Rabbits.

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