Photo by Derrick Mahone
Joensboro coach Tim Floyd (left) talks to defensive players Quinton Edwards (5) and Calvin Shenault in the first quarter of the Cardinals' 30-0 win over Morrow on Friday, which clinched the No. 2 seed in the playoffs.
Jonesboro jumped out to an early lead and never looked back as it spoiled Morrow’s homecoming with a 30-0 victory Friday night at Tara Stadium.
In the process, the Cardinals clinched the Region 4-AAAA No. 2 seed for next month’s playoffs, which gives them a first-round home game.
With 1:20 left in the fourth quarter, the game was called due to an altercation.
It was the seventh time this season that Morrow, 0-8 overall and in the region, was shutout.
Jonesboro senior quarterback Cedric Nettles did the early damage to Morrow in the first quarter. Nettles had accounted for three first quarter touchdowns in the route.
After Morrow started the game with a three-and-out, it took the Cardinals a mere three plays before Nettles found junior wide receiver Dereon London streaking down the sideline 29-yard scoring play for a 7-0 with 8:11 left in the opening quarter.
Jonesboro’s defense forced another three-and-out, but it was Nettles who came up big once again, returning Morrow’s punt 52 yards for the touchdown. The Cardinals converted the two-point conversion to make the score 15-0 with 6:36 remaining.
Morrow turned the ball over on its own 10-yard line, but sophomore linebacker Reginald McMullen sacked Nettles twice to push Jonesboro back to the 35-yard line and forced a punt by the Cardinals. Another three-and-out by Morrow led to Jonesboro possessing the ball in Mustang territory with 25 seconds left in the opening quarter.
Two plays into the second quarter, the Cardinals struck again. This time it was Nettles with the 32-yard touchdown pass to junior wide receiver Taurean Ferguson.
Morrow managed to get a first down on its next drive but was shut down by Jonesboro’s defense and forced to punt once again.
The Cardinals started out in their own territory but were quick to attack. After five plays, Nettles found senior running back Rodney Singleton open for a 40-yard touchdown reception to push the lead to 30-0 with 5:09 remaining in the first half.
Nettles led the Cardinals with 174 yards on 6 of 8 passing and three touchdowns.
Jonesboro (8-1) finishes the regular season at Twelve Oaks Stadium Friday night against Banneker (5-3). Morrow (0-9) will look to end the season on a good note against Forest Park (0-9) Thursday night at Tara Stadium.