Gee Clark + Sheldon Watson lead Palestine to 32-0 Homecoming Shutout of Pittsburg
PALESTINE -- A banged-up Palestine team didn't look too injury-plagued Friday night on homecoming.
Junior quarterback Gee Clark threw three touchdowns and junior receiver Sheldon Watson caught three -- one on a halfback pass -- while the Palestine defense allowed only 232 yards in a 32-0 shutout of Pittsburg at Wildcat Stadium.
Watson caught eight passes for 167 yards. Clark finished 11 of 18 for 249 yards and the three scores -- two to Watson, one to sophomore Devin Lomax. Palestine, which has played without multiple starters on both sides of the ball for the last couple of weeks, got a 83 yards and a first-quarter touchdown on 12 carries from senior Jarrell Owens, a 6-foot-3, 230-pound TCU defensive end pledge. Owens also threw a 12-yard touchdown pass to Watson.
Palestine (4-2) outgained Pittsburg 367-232. The Pirates fell to 2-3 with the loss.
Palestine graduate and NFL superstar Adrian Peterson was in attendance, as well as PHS graduate Sandra Cummings-Glover, a 2000 Olympian in the 400-meter hurdles. Both were inducted to the Palestine Wall of Honor during a halftime ceremony, while Peterson also had his high school jersey retired.
Palestine built an 18-0 halftime lead before Owens' 12-yard touchdown pass to Watson pushed the advantage to 25-0 less than three minutes into the third quarter. Senior Marquis Clark's 63-yard kickoff return set up the short Wildcat drive, which covered 22 yards in five plays.
Gee Clark hit Watson for a 54-yard touchdown on third-and-29 with 3 1/2 minutes remaining for the Wildcats' 32-point victory margin.
Pittsburg senior quarterback Garrett Truitt completed 13 of 20 passes for 116 yards. Senior Carl Leonard ran for 80 yards on 19 carries, but Palestine's defense, which got consistent penetration, held him to 23 yards on his final nine attempts.
Senior Markevius Traylor caught three passes for 51 yards, while classmate Markeith Thompson snagged five passes for 35 yards. Sophomore Fre'Zarian Harrison, who ran eight times for 31 yards, had a solid game defensively with a sack and two tackles for loss.
Owens' 14-yard run capped Palestine's opening drive, a 77-yard march. The Wildcats got the first of ttwo Clark-to-Watson touchdown connections on their next possession. The 21-yarder gave Palestine a 12-0 advantage with 1:06 left in the first.
Palestine pushed its lead to 18-0 with 1:33 until halftime on Clark's 43-yard touchdown strike to sophomore Devin Lomax.
Palestine has a bye before visiting Rusk on Oct. 18 in a District 19-3A opener. Pittsburg visits Paris North Lamar on Friday in a District 13-3A opener.