DENHAM SPRINGS — The last time Zachary High visited Yellow Jacket Stadium, the Broncos needed an improbable fourth-down TD pass in the final minute to knock off Denham Springs.
Three weeks later, no such drama was needed.
Zachary rumbled to a 35-10 win in Friday night’s rematch with its District 4-5A rival, this one coming in the second round of the Class 5A playoffs and advancing the Broncos to their second straight quarterfinal appearance.
Next up for No. 3 seed Zachary (11-1) comes another 4-5A rematch as the Broncos will return home to face No. 22 seed Scotlandville.
“Our team was sick and tired of hearing for three or four weeks that (Denham Springs) gave us the game,” Zachary coach David Brewerton said of playing the 19th-seeded Yellow Jackets again. “Our kids showed up tonight, I can promise you. They played with a chip on their shoulder.”
When the teams met Halloween night to decide the 4-5A championship, DSHS led 24-21 before quarterback Lindsey Scott connected with Shyron White for a 60-yard score on fourth-and-3 and less than a minute remaining.
The Yellow Jackets (7-5) put behind the heartbreaking loss to score a lopsided win at Woodlawn in the first round of the playoffs and earn their first home playoff game since 1995.
Their shot at advancing to the quarterfinals for the first time since 1985 came on a night when Scott’s status was in doubt after the junior quarterback suffered an ankle injury in the first quarter of Zachary’s playoff opener.
But Scott took every meaningful snap for the Broncos, finishing 11 of 15 for 92 yards passing and rushing for a 6-yard score.
“That was the first snaps he has taken all week,” Brewerton said.
With their quarterback’s mobility limited by the ankle injury, the Broncos leaned heavily on sophomore running back Braylon Jones, who rushed for 121 yards on 16 carries and scored two touchdowns.
But there was plenty of credit to go around.
Perhaps the game’s key play came on a double pass that saw receiver Chris Carrier take a lateral from Scott and toss a 79-yard touchdown strike to Douglas Coleman on the first play of the second quarter.
Meanwhile, the Zachary defense recovered from an early haymaker when freshman running back Tyre Golmond ripped off a 77-yard touchdown run on DSHS’ first play from scrimmage.
The Yellow Jackets managed just 96 yards of offense the rest of the night.
“Our kids never batted an eye,” Brewerton said.
After taking the early 7-0 lead, DSHS got its only other points on Zach Boothe’s 34-yard field goal late in the second quarter, making it a 21-10 game.
Golmond finished with only 85 yards rushing for an offense that had five three-and-outs.
“You start out real early real high and then couldn’t sustain some things,” DSHS coach Dru Nettles said. “Just got out of sync — got out of rhythm. The moment got to us a little bit, I believe. That’s part of growing and making strides.”
The Broncos will take an 11-game winning streak into the matchup with Scotlandville as Brewerton’s first season at Zachary rolls on.
“The mentality is respect all, fear none,” Scott said. “We’re going to go in and give them the utmost respect but still know that we’ve got to handle business.”