Parkview Baptist made big play after big play in the fourth quarter to defeat No. 3 St. Charles Catholic 29-20 at Parkview Friday night in a Division II semifinal playoff game.
No. 7 Parkview (9-3) will battle top-seeded University for the state title at 5 p.m. Dec. 5 in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
Parkview’s defense forced two turnovers in the fourth quarter. Trent Kavanaugh recovered a fumble by St. Charles quarterback Austin Weber with 5:00 remaining, and Josh Stansell intercepted Weber three minutes later.
“Our defense was able to strip the ball from them and force the fumble,” Parkview coach Jay Mayet said. “The interception was big. We had pressure on the quarterback, and he made a hurried high throw.”
Parkview’s offense went to work after both turnovers. The Eagles drove 41 yards in four plays after the fumble recovery.
Facing a third-and-12, Parkview pitched the ball to senior running back Houston Robert who tossed a halfback pass to the right corner of the end zone. St. Charles had good coverage on the play, but junior Jaylon Carlin hauled in the 32-yard touchdown pass. Wade Simmons added the PAT for a 29-20 lead with 3:31 remaining.
“We didn’t get the coverage we wanted on the play, but Jaylon went up and made a great catch,” Mayet said.
“It’s a play we practice a lot,” said Robert, who rushed 16 times for a game-high 114 yards. “I just threw it up hoping he’d make a play. Advancing to the Superdome for the second time in three years shows how hard we work in our program. It’s awesome.”
St. Charles picked up one first down on its final series before Weber’s interception. Parkview picked up two first downs to run out the clock.
Parkview scored on its first three possessions and led 22-7 after one quarter.
Quarterback Reggie Hayes scored on runs of 9 and 7 yards to cap drives of 44 and 79 yards. Jacob Ruffin’s 38-yard kickoff return to open the game was a key play.
After the second TD run by Hayes, Parkview’s Wade Simmons took a pitch left and ran to the left pylon for the two-point conversion to put the Eagles up 15-0 with 4:35 remaining.
“We saw something on film we liked and got the look we wanted to go for two points,” Mayet said. “St. Charles played it well. Luckily we got it in.”
Tahj Smith returned the ensuing kickoff 62 yards for St. Charles to set up a two-play, 26-yard drive. Weber scored on an 11-yard run to cut the deficit to 15-7 with 4:12 remaining.
The Eagles came right back with a five-play, 85-yard drive capped by Kayin White’s 54-yard weaving run up the middle with 2:15 remaining in the first quarter.
Erron Lewis scored for St. Charles on runs of 1 and 3 yards in the second and third quarters.
White rushed nine times for 100 yards for the Eagles. Hayes added 42 yards on 11 tries and Nelson Smith had 66 yards on 10 carries.
Weber rushed 22 times for 100 yards and passed for 103 yards for the Comets (9-3).