CROWLEY - When Parkview Baptist truly needed tough yards they turned to a defensive mentality to get the job done.
Case in point came midway through the third quarter with the Eagles locked in a tied game and facing a crucial fourth-and-two situation that could potentially set the tone for the remainder of the game.
Through sheer effort linebacker-turned-running back Brody Burkhalter, who already had a touchdown to his credit in the game, lowered his head and through second effort garnered the all-important first down.
One play later, quarterback Brennan Bozeman raced 22 yards that broke the deadlock and went a long way in No. 11 Parkview Baptist’s 28-13 Class 3A state regional victory Friday over No. 6 Notre Dame of Crowley at Gardiner Memorial Stadium.
“That was the play of the game,” Parkview football coach Kenny Guillot said. “Brody hit that guy and it sounded like a shotgun going off and he kept moving his legs and got the first down. If we don’t make the first down they may win the game, so it was awesome.”
Bozeman, who rushed 12 times for 151 yards, gave Parkview a 21-6 lead late in the third quarter with a 83-yard run around end that created enough seperation for the Eagles to withstand the Pioneers down the stretch.
Parkview Baptist (8-3) won its seventh consecutive game and will host Port Allen, a 14-13 win over Loranger, in next week’s state quarterfinal.
“It was another Notre Dame-Parkview classic,” Guillot said. “It was another unbelievable type game. Both teams played hard and we had a little more left in the tank than they did and that was the difference because it was a great football game.”
Notre Dame (8-4) pulled to within 21-13 with 11:15 to play on Waylon Young’s 31-yard touchdown pass to Blake Miller. But the Pioneers, which had a six-game win streak snapped, were unsuccessful in their fourth-down effort with Young throwing incomplete with 7:10 remaining.
“We had some opportunities and we knew there wouldn’t be many of them,” Notre Dame coach Lewis Cook said. “A couple of times we needed a play here and there and obviously if we convert the fourth down it would have at least kept us in the game.”
Parkview closed with a touchdown after Notre Dame’s failed fourth-down try with Conner Hodgeson scoring on a 3-yard run with 1:47 to play. Neil Scott added his second extra point.
The Eagles scored on three of the fourth second-half possessions with two of the drives consuming more than five minutes. They easily won the time of possession battle, holding the ball for nearly 30 minutes.
PBS’ clock-grinding offense rushed the ball 53 times for 304 yards of its 367 total yards, including 203 yards on the ground in the second half. Hodgeson had 58 yards on 19 carries and Hezekiah Randolph added 44 on 11 attempts.
Notre Dame countered with 259 yards with Young completing 6 of 15 passes for 104 yards with a TD and interception. Luke Broussard was the Pioneers’ top rusher with 85 yards on 10 carries.
PBS found itself tied 6-all at halftime after an 11-play, 70-yard drive that was kept alive with a pair of successful fourth-down conversions and Burkhalter tied the game with a four-yard run with 6:38 showing in the second quarter to cap another five-plus minute drive.
Notre Dame, which recovered a PBS fumble in the end zone in the first quarter, jumped out to a 6-0 lead on the first play of the second quarter with Nick Gossen scoring on a 4-yard run.
“Our kids battled back and they battled back also,” Guillot said. “It was back and forth and we stayed the course and stuck to our game plan and it worked. Everything worked out for us.”