Conner Long booted a 20-yard field goal in the final seconds to lift the Philadelphia Tornadoes to a 23-22 victory over Noxubee County last Friday night in prep football action.

The Tornadoes improved to 3-1 with the victory. They host Madison-Ridgeland Academy this Friday night at Harpole Field.

“It was a big win, no doubt about it,” said coach David Frey. “It means we are headed in the right direction.  We still had some mistakes that need to be fixed. We still are not where we want to be. But to get a win against a team like Noxubee County, that is a huge confidence builder.”

The Tornadoes jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter.

Noxubee County kicked off to the Tornadoes. But on first down, the Tigers intercepted a pass to take over on the Philadelphia 47-yard line. Two plays later, Noxubee County fumbled and Antuaze Brown recovered for the Tornadoes at their 48-yard line.

Raedarius Triplett picked up two first downs on rushes of 31 and 11 yards. Two plays later, Lidetrick Griffin scored on a 15-yard gain. The extra point failed and the Tornadoes led 6-0 with 10:06 left in the first quarter

The Tornadoes kicked off. Two plays later, Kadarius Calloway intercepted a pass and returned to the Noxubee County 25-yard line.

On second down, Griffin rushed 22 yards for a touchdown. The extra point was no good and the Tornadoes led 12-0 with 8:23 left in the first quarter.

The Tornadoes kicked off. The Tigers could never get a handle on the ball and it rolled into the end zone. Noxubee County was tackled in the end zone for a safety, making the score 14-0.

Things settled down until the second quarter when the Tigers blocked a Philadelphia punt and tackled the punter in end zone for a safety. Philadelphia led 14-2 with 5:03 left in the half.

Then the Tigers’ Travorus Hatcher scored on a six-yard run with 1:16 left in half. At the intermission, Philadelphia held a 14-8 lead.

In the third quarter, Asher Morgan connected with Calloway on 38-yard TD pass play. The try for two failed and Philadelphia led 20-8.

But Noxubee County came back with some points of its on with a 15-yard pass from Macardi Johnson to Jeffery Malone. The Tigers made the two point conversion and Philadelphia led 20-16.

That’s the way it stood until the final three minutes. With time running out, the Tornadoes went to the air and Marion Windham intercepted the ball for a pick-six. The Tigers went for two and failed but led 22-20 with 2:30 left in the game.

The Tornadoes took the kickoff and got some unexpected help when the Tigers were flagged twice for unsportsmanlike conduct to put ball inside the 10-yard line.

Long set up for a 25-yard field with 31 seconds left. It was no good but Noxubee County was flagged for running into the kicker and Long set up for a 20-yard field goal.

His kick was good and the Tornadoes won the game.

Morgan completed 15-of-24 passes for 210 yards. He threw two touchdown passes and was intercepted once. Griffin had three catches for 30 yards and a touchdown. Calloway caught six passes for 114 yards and a touchdown. Triplett had 11 rushes for 64 yards.

Francisco Wilson had 12 tackles and two sacks for the Tornadoes. Zykileous Moore had six tackles and three sacks. Griffin had six tackles and Tanner Boler and Calloway both had an interception. MRA stands at 5-0 and is averaging around 50 points per game.

Now the Tornadoes look toward Madison-Ridgeland Academy.

“It’s another big game,” Frey said. “Madison-Ridgeland is really good. They are very disciplined and don’t make mistakes. They have some big lineman and their quarterback is one of the best in the state. We are going to have our hands full.”

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.