Alexandria Senior High's Kyle Smith (26) is tackled Friday by Peabody. The Warhorses won, 32-7. / Tia Owens-Powersemail@example.com
When Peabody last beat ASH, Reginald Booms connected with Glen Hall on a 75-yard pass play for the winning touchdown in a 24-21 victory in 1990.
On Friday night, three plays like that crushed the Trojans. Sadrick Kirklin hit three different receivers for touchdown passes of 75, 76 and 71 yards to lead the Warhorses to victory.
Kirklin was a surprise starter since Peabody coach Anthony Hicks said Thursday that his sophomore quarterback might not play against ASH.
“That was before our second practice, but he was the best man for the job,” said Hicks, noting Kirklin emerged in that role after a second practice Thursday from 6-8 p.m. that included just him, Kirklin and some receivers.
“I tried to drill it in his head that he had to hit his routes early, and if he did, we’d make some big plays,” said Hicks, whose squad improved to 4-1.
Kirklin found his brother, senior Contarious Kirklin, wide open at the ASH 35 in what would be a 75-yard touchdown play for Peabody’s second touchdown in the first quarter. The first TD was a 2-yard run by Glenn Roberson that was set up when Jalen Weaver blocked a Matthew Beck punt that the Warhorses recovered at the ASH 2.
Two plays into Peabody’s next series, Kirklin hit Darshun Boss on a 76-yard scoring pass, and three plays after ASH scored its lone touchdown on a 10-yard run by Kyle Smith, Kirklin connected with Eriel Dorsey for a 71-yard touchdown.
Peabody’s lone touchdown in the second half was a 39-yard run by Josh Gaston.
ASH finished with one net yard rushing, despite getting 58 yards on 21 carries from Smith. Beck got 48 yards through the air, completing four of 15 passes, with one intercepted.
“The best thing about this victory is we don’t have to hear nobody mouthing on Saturday about how ASH won again,” Hicks said. “Most important, though, I give God the credit, glory and praise. He gave me a good staff and good players, and they play together and come together as a family.”
Hicks said Kirklin (9 of 16 for 242 yards, 3 TDs) played “like the Sadrick Kirklin from (the 56-13 win over) Menard, not the Sadrick from (a 26-20 win over) Block or (a 12-6 loss to) Carroll. And nobody can run with our receivers, who are the best in Central Louisiana.”
ASH interim coach Brad Chesshir, whose team slipped to 1-4, was impressed with Peabody’s effort.
“You’ve got to give credit to Peabody,” he said. “They came ready to play and we didn’t. Coach Hicks has done a great job with that program. They wanted it more than we did.
“This is going to be a gut-check week for us,” he went on.
Asked about the three long touchdown pass plays his team gave up to Peabody, Chesshir said, “We were not disciplined. We were not doing what we were coached to do. Overall, it’s my fault we lost this football game.”
The lone somber note for Peabody was that sophomore center Martavious Dotson suffered a concussion, Hicks said, adding, “but I think he’s going to be alright