Starkville High School football

Starkville High School wide receiver Rufus Harvey (6) celebrates after a touchdown against Olive Branch.

The Starkville Yellow Jackets knew going into Friday night’s Class 6A playoff game against Olive Branch that if they wanted to stay alive and advance to next week’s North Half final, they’d have to break through against what has been a smothering Conquistador defense all year.

As it turned out, not only did Starkville do enough to break through, it also beat Olive Branch at its own game.

The Yellow Jacket defense put the clamps on the Conquistadors, keeping them out of the end zone all night long and shutting them out in the second half, as Starkville ultimately beat Olive Branch 20-3.

“You have to win on defense if you want to win ballgames,” Starkville head coach Chris Jones said. “I think we’re starting to peak at the right time. This defense was lights out man.”

For more on the Jackets and their defense, see Saturday's Starkville Daily News.

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