GRAY -- The numbers in so many areas were good for Jones County.
The Greyhounds controlled the ball, ran more than twice as many plays as Lakeside-Evans and had nearly three times as many first downs.
But special teams problems and a late big play doomed Jones County as Lakeside took advantage in a 35-20 win in Region 2-AAAAA action.
We had the first bad punt we had all year long, and that hurt us, Jones County head coach Dwight Jones said. Then we had the bad snap that bit us in the butt. Then you have the kickoff return.
Lakeside (6-2, 4-1 GHSA Region 2-AAAAA) led 28-14 at halftime despite running only 14 plays for 73 yards to 32 for 95 for Jones County (4-4, 2-3).
You cant give up big plays, Jones said. We gave up 28 points in the first half, and they had few snaps.
Lakeside took advantage of a shanked punt early, going 29 yards on three plays to score less than four minutes in.
Jones County answered with a quality nine-play, 73-yard drive on which the Greyhounds faced only one third down and got 21 yards from Walker Juhan.
Aaron Shaheen scored from 3 yards out and Wade Carrs kick tied it at 7 with 4:53 left in the first.
But Stephen Houzah did what he has done before this season and brought the kickoff back 89 yards for a touchdown.
The Greyhounds mounted another drive but stalled just passed midfield. The punt snap was high, and Lakeside got it on the Jones County 20, scoring five plays later for a two-touchdown lead 62 seconds into the second quarter.
Again, Jones County shrugged off the adversity and consumed more than five minutes on a balanced 12-play, 69-yard drive on which five different Greyhounds carried the ball.
Juhan got 9 yards on a fourth-and-1 and then 15 on third-and-4 with Landon Vaughn capping the drive from a yard out. Juhan, a junior, was a workhorse with 144 yards on 27 carries.
This time, Jones Countys pooch kick backfired when Kyle Welch caught it and rambled 41 yards, setting up Lakeside at the Jones County 24. Jones Countys defense bowed up for a bit, forcing Lakeside to convert a fourth-and-goal at the 1 to finally score.
Luke Harmons kick made it 28-14, and the Greyhounds were sharp in quickly driving from their 35 to the Panthers 19 only to get stopped on fourth-and-5 inside the final minute.
We had opportunities to make a couple plays, right at the end of the first half, Jones said. We didnt do that.
The Greyhounds consumed 7:05 on a touchdown drive in the third, but the extra-point try was blocked and Jones County trailed 28-20. Then they held on fourth-and-2 at their 5.
But Lakeside sealed it with 7:41 left in the game with a 55-yard pass from Banks to an open Edwards, who then broke a few tackles.
There were things to build on, Jones said. But there were a lot more mistakes than there was good.