PERKINSTON, Miss. (MGCCC) - It was déjà vu for Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College and not in a good way.
For the second straight year, Jones was ranked No. 14. The Bulldogs were No. 1, but the Bobcats walked away with a 52-42 victory.
"We made way too many mistakes --- it was a total-team deal," said Gulf Coast head coach Steve Campbell, who's now 8-3 all-time against Jones. "We didn't play well enough on either side, or even on special teams. We turned it over a couple of times and gave up too many big plays. It was a perfect recipe for not being successful."
Jones (4-0, 2-0) used an offense paced by quarterback Steve Swindle's 398-yard, four-touchdown passing performance, a defense that forced two Bulldog turnovers that both led to points, and a special teams gaffe by Gulf Coast (3-1, 1-1) to earn the win.
After the Bulldogs took a 28-21 lead into halftime, Jones turned a Gulf Coast fumble into an 81-yard TD strike from Swindle to JaMichael Willis to tie the game 28-28 in the third quarter. Willis had nine catches for 225 yards and two scores in the contest.
Later in the third quarter, a bad snap on a punt attempt led to a 38-yard field goal by Jones kicker Grant McLaurin to put the Bobcats up 31-28 heading into the fourth quarter.
Gulf Coast responded with a 1-yard TD run by Antwon Wells to take a 35-31 lead with 13:26 left to play. Wells rushed 109 yards and two touchdowns on 22 attempts.
Jones answered with a 1-yard score by back-up quarterback Quay Boyd to regain the lead 38-35, then pushed its margin to 10 points when an intercepted pass led to a 30-yard TD pass from Swindle to Dylan Bossier.
Gulf Coast got as close as 45-42 when quarterback Colton Kane scored on a 1-yard run with 4:55 left. Kane saw his first game action since the season opener against Coahoma and went 20-of-41 for 217 yards, three touchdowns and one interception.
Jones sealed the victory by scoring on a 36-yard TD pass from Swindle to Willis with 3:03 left. A last-ditch effort by Gulf Coast to cut into the 10-point deficit failed when freshman kicker Tristan Reynolds missed from 39 yards out with 1:55 left.
On offense, Gulf Coast and NJCAA All-American wide receiver Dhaquille Williams hauled in 11 passes for 133 yards and three touchdowns -- all in the first half. Justin Brister rushed for 66 yards on 11 carries and Ishmel Morrow tallied 61 total offensive yards. The Bulldogs defense also forced two turnovers and had two sacks in the loss.