STONEWALL — A recording of the Black Eyed Peas hit “I Gotta Feeling” with the lyric ‘tonight’s gonna be a good night’ filled the air as the first half of the Class 3A quarterfinal game wound down.
And indeed it was a good night for top-seeded Parkview Baptist. Hezekiah Randolph and Connor Hodgeson led the way as the Eagles raced out to a 49-6 halftime lead en route to a 62-21 victory over No. 9 North DeSoto High in a Class 3A quarterfinal game played at NDHS on Friday night.
Hodgeson and Randolph each scored three touchdowns to help power PBS a week after they had to rally for a come-from-behind win over Brusly.
“There’s a sense urgency,” Hodgeson said. “The whole one-and-done part of the playoffs became real for us last week. We didn’t want to have to come from behind. We wanted to start fast.”
Hodgeson ran for 152 yards on 16 carries with three TDs, while Randoph added 87 rushing yards on 10 carries and added 89 receiving yards with three TDs.
Brennan Bozeman passed for 148 yards and a TD and ran for 84, including a 67-yard TD run for the Eagles (11-0), who host Livonia (11-2) in the semifinals next week. Erik Martinez added 51 rushing yards and 59 receiving yards to help PBS tally 558 total yards. The Eagles also had a hand in seven turnovers for North DeSoto. Aurren Cooksey ran for a game-high 219 yards on 12 carries with TD runs of 86 and 90 yards for the Griffins (9-4), who made their first quarterfinal appearance.
“It snowballed on us,” NDHS coach Scott Abernathy said. “We’ve been physical all year, and our kids didn’t play well. For whatever reason, we didn’t watch our keys. I didn’t prepare us well enough. Hats off to (the Eagles).”
PBS coach Kenny Guillot said the path of the game surprised him. “We expected a close game,” Guillot said. “But I think last week kind of scared them a little bit. They realized we were vunerable. They came out ready and did a great job.”
Parkview hit the ground running and scored 35 first-quarter points to quiet North DeSoto’s home stands. The Eagles rolled up 461 first-half yards. Just as pivotal were five North DeSoto turnovers, two of which led to PBS scores during a three-minute span in the second quarter.
PBS took the opening kickoff and drove 75 yards in seven plays. Hodgeson ran for 54 yards on the drive, including a 33-yard run. Randolph scored on a 2-yard run, and Taylor Black’s first PAT kick made it 7-0 at the 8:28 mark.
Manny Mukes intercepted an Austin Simmons pass on North DeSoto’s first play. It was the first of four first-half interceptions for the Griffins, who played three quarterbacks. A 59-yard Bozeman-to-Randolph pass set up a 6-yard TD run by Hodgeson, making it 14-0 at the 5:11 mark.
Soon the floodgates opened. Bozeman scored on a 67-yard run, and it was 21-0 with 2:48 to go in the first quarter. After an NDHS punt, a 42-yard run by Randolph set up a 35-yard TD run by Hodgeson. It was 28-0 with 35 seconds remaining in the first period. But the Eagles weren’t done. Davis hauled in his first interception and returned it 40 yards for a score. PBS took a 35-0 lead into the second quarter.
Davis’ second interception sparked the next Parkview score. Hodgeson scored on a 34-yard run to make it 42-0 with 6:09 left in the half. A fumble recovery by Victor Gutierrez seconds later led to another PBS score — a 30-yard Bozeman-to-Randolph strike.
It was 49-0 before Cooksey scored on an 86-yard run to put North DeSoto on the board with 1:47 remaining in the half.
Each team scored once in the slower-paced third quarter. PBS’ Randolph scored his third TD on a 4-yard run that capped a 68-yard drive.
“We didn’t like that feeling of having to come back last week,” Randolph said. “We took care of our responsibilities.”
North DeSoto came right back with a TD on a 13-yard run by Kyler Radford, capping a 65-yard drive.
Parkview added a TD in the fourth quarter when Alex Ginn blocked a punt and Dillon Harris recovered it for a score in the end zone to make it 62-13.
The final score came on Cooksey’s 90-yard scoring run with less than three minutes left.