East Ascension High School scored touchdowns on its first three possessions Friday night, but had to withstand a second-half rally before holding off Woodlawn 28-25 for a District 5-5A win.
The Spartans (6-3, 2-2) put together three long first-half drives, but were outscored 18-7 in the second half as Woodlawn fought back.
“We just had this happen last week,” EA coach Paul Bourgeois. “Big leads are great, but it makes it tough because the other team has nothing to lose.”
Jamarcus Jarvis led the Spartans with 90 yards and two touchdowns. Quarterback Adam Miller misfired on his first six attempts, but went on to complete 10 of 20 for 91 yards with two scores.
Woodlawn (3-6 1-3) rallied behind quarterback Kendall Barnes, who finished 15-of-25 passing for 208 yards, including an 80-yard strike to Jamaal Lofton that pulled Woodlawn within 21-14 early in the second half.
Jonathan Barnes’ 47-yard field goal got the Panthers within 21-17, but Jarvis’ 33-yard TD run pushed the lead to 28-17 late in the game.
Woodlawn’s Deandre Cosby then caught a 4-yard touchdown pass. Lofton’s two-point conversion catch made it 28-25, but East Ascension recovered the ensuing onside kick and ran out the clock.
“I don’t want to take anything away from East Ascension, but we left it all on the field at Dutchtown (last week),” Woodlawn coach Don Jones said. “Tonight we didn’t come to play. We had no emotion on either side of the ball.”
East Ascension took a 21-7 halftime lead thanks to a grinding rushing attack that helped the Spartans hold on to the ball for more than 14 minutes.
Jarvis started the scoring with a 1-yard run to cap a 15-play, 68-yard drive to open the game. EAHS converted two fourth downs on the drive, and was aided by Woodlawn offside penalties each time.
Jamaal Lofton’s 37-yard kickoff return gave Woodlawn a start at the EA 38. Kendall Barnes’ 21-yard completion to Jarred Adams brought a first at the EA 5, but an illegal block nullified Brent Torrance’s touchdown run on the next play.
Two downs later, Barnes fumbled the ball away as he was sacked, and the scoring chance was lost.
The Spartans then used 11 plays to travel 77 yards for their second touchdown. Sione Palelei ran three times for 40 yards before Miller connected with Tyler Briley for an 11-yard score.
Mason Decateau’s extra point made it 14-0 with 11:11 left in the second quarter.
Woodlawn drove 76 yards to cut the deficit to 14-7. Brenton Terrance sparked the series with runs of 13 and 19 yards, and he finished off the drive with a 2-yard scoring run.
East Ascension took over at its 41 following the kickoff. Palelei’s runs of 18 and 9 yards helped the Spartans move into range for their third score. Miller’s 1-yard pass to Chad Hill made it 21-7 with four minutes left in the half.