PA football

Pillow Academy quarterback Christian Belk (2) breaks free from the Adams County Christian School’s defense during the Mustangs’ 30-17 loss on Friday night.

Pillow Academy’s vaunted ground game could never quite get on track as Adams County Christian School shut down the Mustangs in their second-round MAIS Class 5A playoff game Friday night in Natchez.

The Rebels, who came in as the No. 3 seed, beat Pillow 30-17, ending the Mustangs’ season at 9-4.

Adams County Christian (9-2) advances to play Heritage Academy in the semifinals on Nov. 13. Heritage knocked off Starkville Academy 21-19 Friday night.

In the other half of the bracket, Leake Academy topped Hartfield Academy 42-35 and Lamar School beat Park Place 49-14.

Pillow was held to 164 yards rushing and 64 yards passing for a 228 total. Adams County, however, had 375 yards rushing and only eight yards passing for a 383 total.

The Rebels jumped out to a 16-3 lead after the first period as they drove the ball down the field twice on the Mustangs’ defense. They scored from a yard out for their first touchdown and tacked on a 2-point conversion for an 8-0 lead.

Pillow got its only points in the quarter on a 26-yard field goal from Richard McQueen.

With just over two minutes remaining in the opening frame, the Rebels scored again on a run and 2-point conversion.

Neither team scored in the second frame, but Adams County got a 36-yard scoring run and a 45-yard TD run in the third quarter. Pillow kept within striking distance as senior quarterback Christian Belk scored on a 46-yard run. Juan Carlos Hernandez kicked the PAT to make it 30-10 heading into the fourth quarter.

Pillow made it 30-17 with a touchdown run of 45 yards from Gavin Lessley in the fourth. Lessley’s TD run broke the single-season record of 17 held by Ja’Quez Taylor and Steve Young.

Lessley was held to 70 yards on 14 carries. He also had one catch for 29 yards.

Belk finished with 81 yards on 15 carries. He was just 3-of-13 passing for 64 yards. Belk had two solo stops and seven assists on defense.

Alex Tanksley had five solos and six assists from his linebacker position. Britt Reichle had 10 total tackles.

Contact Calvin Stevens at 581-7234 or

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