10 Observations from Malakoff’s 22-20 loss to Kemp

By Michael V. Hannigan/HCN

MALAKOFF — The Kemp Yellowjackets kept their district record perfect Friday night, beating the Malakoff Tigers 22-20 to end the regular season.

The key play came with less than two minutes left when, with the score tied 20-20 and Malakoff lining up for an extra point to take its first lead of the game, a Kemp player leaped over the Malakoff line to block the kick. The ball was tracked down by Yellowjacket Jaise Bowie and returned 78 yards for a Kemp 2-point conversion.

It was a game of big plays, big penalties, injuries, shifting momentum and an unmistakable undertone of animosity.

As always, here are my 10 Observations and Game Balls.

File photo

— Let’s deal with the blocked extra point right up front. The Malakoff sideline and stands were upset a flag wasn’t thrown for a Kemp player leaping over the Tiger center. I spoke briefly with the referee after the game and he said the Kemp player jumped through a gap in the line and that is legal, so that is why there was no flag. Either way, you have to give credit to Yellowjacket Jaise Bowie for making a big play when it looked like Malakoff was going to complete a most improbable comeback.

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Around the Town: Binging on Midsomer Murders

By Loretta Humble/Around the Town

A few of you have wanted to know where I’ve been the last couple of weeks. Well, my body has been at my house dealing with a bad cold that went rogue. (I’m better now, thank you.) The rest of me has been spending a lot of time in quaint English villages, where flowering vines cover most of the buildings, where there is almost always a festival going on, where old ladies in headscarves have a lot to say about whatever is going on. There are also quite a few murders, but usually the victims weren’t very likeable, and an eminently likeable past-middle-aged detective named Tom Barnaby and his young sergeant, currently named Ben, always find the culprits. I’ve come to know DCI Barnaby and his family quite well: his wife Joyce, a stay-at-home partner, a great homemaker, but not a very good cook, who works hard in all the worthwhile community events, and his daughter Culley, an aspiring actress, who recently married a rock musician. These folks have become my second family as I have been binge-watching till I’m half-way through the 20 seasons of Midsomer Murders on Netflix. (Actually I think the 20th season is on Amazon, not Netflix.)

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Malakoff rides defense to 21-10 win over Spring Hill

By Michael V. Hannigan/HCN

MALAKOFF — The Malakoff Tigers have shown that they can win by lighting up the scoreboard, but Friday night they showed they can also win on grit.

The Tigers (3-1) toughed out a 21-10 homecoming win over Spring Hill (2-3) by leaning on its defense and getting just enough plays from its short-handed offense.

Except for a single breakdown in the fourth quarter when Spring Hill connected on a 63-yard touchdown pass, the Tigers defense shut down the Panthers. Malakoff held Spring Hill to just three first downs in the first half and just eight overall.

According to my unofficial stats, the Tigers held Spring Hill to under 200 yards of total offense. Half the Panthers’ yards came on three pass plays of 63, 23, and 15 in the fourth quarter.

The Malakoff defensive front seven has been stout all year and it was no different in this game. The Tigers came up with three sacks on the night, including a huge one by Caleb Adams late in the fourth quarter with Malakoff nursing a four-point lead.

Offensively, young players stepped up for the Tigers. Malakoff was led by sophomore quarterback Darion Peace, who rushed 22 times for 153 yards and two touchdowns of 7 and 30 yards, plus added a 43-yard touchdown pass to sophomore Nathan Jones.

Jones had five catches for 59 yards on the night. Peace could have had better stats throwing, but the Tiger receivers struggled with drops Friday.

The other workhorse for the Tigers Friday was junior running back Keevie Rose, who carried 16 times for 121 yards.

Freshman Duce Hart pitched in with 24 yards on seven carries.

Malakoff will have next Friday night off before getting back to work Friday, Oct. 12, on the road at Dallas Life Oak Cliff.

Around the Town: Plenty going on around Malakoff

By Loretta Humble/Around The Town

Swarms of hummingbirds arrived at my place less than two weeks ago. They were supposed to arrive when the honeysuckles bloom, but only a couple of strays showed up then. I wish somebody would tell me where these guys have been, but now that they have arrived, I can hardly keep my feeders full. I don’t mind buying more sugar. I love watching them. They make me happy.

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Around the Town: Talking about the Michels

Loretta Humble

By Loretta Humble/Around the Town

I met Karen and Wren Michels in 2010, when they opened Peas in the Pod restaurant in Malakoff. The food was great, and I went there often. But I soon discovered it was just a front for what they were really doing. They were turning around and taking every penny they made and then some to feed and minister to people in need, with a clothes closet, food pantry, church services and a recovery program. We were all sorry when they closed. I don’t know for sure why, but I’m guessing they just gave till they couldn’t give any more.

They just couldn’t stop giving, so they set their sights on ministering abroad. They set goals of raising enough money so that every other year they could go and meet small needs of the neediest in the most remote areas of Africa. Karen says they knew they could do big things with little money but trusted that God could use that little money to make a big difference in a few villagers’ lives. Karen would research the place to go next, and find the cheapest tickets possible. They would save what money they could, gratefully accept gifts from family, friends and church members, then Wren would go to the bank and make a loan for the rest of what it took.

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