CARTHAGE - No. 1-ranked Carthage flexed its muscles with a 50-20 victory over Kilgore on Friday night at Bulldog Stadium.
Keaontay Ingram rushed for a season-high 291 yards and five touchdowns as the defending state champions stretched their current win streak to 16 in a row, avenging their last loss, which was against Kilgore a year ago in Kilgore, 41-34.
With the win, Carthage improves to 6-0 for the season and 2-0 in District 9-4A Division I play, while Kilgore drops to 5-2 and 2-1, respectively.
Kilgore went toe-to-toe with Carthage early and led 20-15, following Demorrea Richardson’s one-yard scoring run with 9:08 left in the second quarter.
Kilgore couldn’t recover though from costly mistakes as Ingram, an early commit to the University of Texas, and Carthage began to roll, scoring 35 unanswered points to secure its second district win in as many weeks.
Ingram, who rushed for more than 200 yards a couple of weeks ago against Gilmer, but was held to 68 a week ago against Henderson, scored on runs of 8-, 3-, 71-, 8- and 20-yards.
Carthage finished with 550 yards of total offense compared to Kilgore’s 311. The ’Dawgs gained 364 on the ground and quarterback Gunner Capps was 14 of 22 passing for 186 yards and a touchdown. His scoring pass covered two-yards to Dewaylon Ingram, who finished with four receptions for 68 yards.
Dee Bowens and Mekhi Colbert also had four catches apiece. Bowens was 4-for-53 and Colbert 4-for-60 as targets.
Tucker Smith came on to score Carthage’s final touchdown of the night on a five-yard run with 7:24 left to play.
Briant Mumphrey scored Kilgore’s first touchdown and finished the contest with 138 yards. Ja’Vorie Hamilton added 104 yards on nine carries.
Kilgore quarterback Patrick “Buddy” Jackson was 5 of 7 passing for 50 yards. Oklahoma State verbal commit Jonathan Shepherd led the K-Dogs’ receiving corps with three catches for 30 yards. Deiontrae Wheat followed with two receptions for 20 yards.
Kilgore scored on its first possession, following a three-and-out by Carthage, on a 44-yard Mumphrey run to cap a nifty three-play, 52-yard march. Elivan Torres’ PAT gave the visiting Bulldogs a 7-0 advantage.
Carthage was quick to answer though with Ingram scoring his first touchdown of the evening on an eight-yard burst with 9:34 remaining in the first quarter.
A nine-yard Nick Hooper carry with 6:34 left in the opening quarter gave Kilgore a 14-7 edge.
Carthage used its alert defense to tackle Jaiden Zackery in the end zone. Zackery was going back to retrieve and errant pitchout and tried to reverse his field, but was tackled for the safety, cutting into the Ragin’ Red lead to five, 14-9.
Capps, the Carthage quarterback, who had a big night against Henderson a week ago, completed a two-yard scoring strike to Dewaylon Ingram, giving the home-standing ’Dawgs their first lead of the contest, 15-14, on the initial play of the second quarter.
Ingram, who came into the contest with 686 yards rushing, had not only the ’Dawgs’ first touchdown of the game, but 105 yards rushing at the end of the first period. At that point, he was just getting started, accounting for three of Carthage’s four scores in the second quarter on runs of 3-, 71- and 8-yards as Carthage opened up a 16-point (36-20) halftime lead.
Next week, Kilgore returns home to entertain Henderson, while Carthage visits Center.