A ground-oriented offense and a rock-solid defense have long been cornerstones of the Parkview Baptist football program.
The 11th-seeded Eagles proved those standards are anything but obsolete by pounding their way to a 35-13 victory over Port Allen High in Class 3A quarterfinal game Friday night at PBS.
Quarterback Brennan Bozeman ran for a game-high 146 yards on 13 carries and two touchdowns, including a 69-yard TD run in the fourth quarter that helped bury Port Allen’s hopes for a comeback.
Port Allen’s Darian Claiborne completed 16 of 28 passes for 222 yards with TD tosses of 50 and 33 yards to Ashton Paul Williams. But PBS limited the Pelicans (10-3) to just 7 yards rushing, including five sacks of Claiborne.
In addition to Bozeman’s 69-yard run that came after Port Allen cut the PBS lead to 21-13, Parkview powered its way through a 14-play, 82-yard drive that took 6:03 off the clock.
“That Claiborne kid is something special,” PBS coach Kenny Guillot said. “If you don’t drop in coverage, he’s going to bomb you to death, and if you do, he’s going to run you death.
“It’s a credit to our defense that they did a great job putting pressure on him. Well, when they (an opponent) have got great athletes, they can’t hurt you if they’re sitting on the bench.”
Conner Hodgeson added 94 yards on 14 carries and Hezekiah Randolph added 62 yards on 13 carries with one TD for a PBS team that finished with 394 rushing yards. William finished with 9 catches for 168 yards for No. 14 PAHS.
With the win, defending Class 3A state champion PBS travels to LaPlace to take on second-seeded St. Charles Catholic (13-0).
“They (Parkview) are really good at what they do,” PAHS coach Guy Blanchard said. “I think the big thing was, after we got back into it at 21-13, we gave up that big play. That was a backbreaker. They took a lot of mojo out of us.
“I’m just proud of my guys. (It’s a) group that was picked to finish last in district, and they got to come out and play in the quarterfinals for the first time ever (in PAHS history).”
Parkview didn’t complete a pass in the game. Why go to the air, when things are going so well on the ground?
PBS rolled up 156 rushing yards while claiming a 21-7 halftime lead.
PBS took the opening kickoff and drove 69 yards in seven plays, aided by three Port Allen penalties, one of which was a late hit following a 21-yard run by Andre Davis. Bozeman scored on a 1-yard run, and Neil Scott’s point-after kick made it 7-0 with 9:20 left in the first quarter.
After a PAHS punt, the Eagles scored again. This time, it was a 10-play, 50-yard drive. An 11-yard run by Tom Bove was the biggest play. Brody Burkhalter scored on a 3-yard run that made it 14-0 on the final play of the first quarter.
Desperate to make something happen, Port Allen’s Claiborne did just that, hitting Ashton Paul Williams with a 50-yard scoring pass over the middle. Ricky Decuir’s PAT kick capped the 77-yard drive and made the deficit 14-7 with 7:50 remaining in the first half.
Parkview bounced right back with another score. Randolph carried the ball three times, and Burkhalter scored on a 4-yard run to make the lead 21-7 at the 4:25 mark.
The half ended with Dylan Phillippe intercepting a Claiborne pass. The Pelicans held the Eagles out of the end zone on their first possession of the second half, forcing a missed 35-yard field goal try by Neil Scott.
PAHS got a turnover when Charles Mullens recovered a Parkview fumble. That fumble recovery jumpstarted a nine-play, 61-yard drive that ended with Claiborne’s 33-yard scoring pass to Williams with 54.6 seconds to go in the third quarter.
Bozeman scored on the next play, rambling 69 yards down the PBS sideline. The Eagles led 28-13 going into the fourth quarter.
Four PBS players took turns carrying the ball on the 82-yard TD drive. It ended with Randolph scoring a 4-yard run.
“Our line was getting after them all night,” Phillippe said. “We made adjustments when we had to.”