By Michael Finnegan / Special Contributor
ESD knew how difficult it was to beat St. Mark’s. After all, it took the school 38 years to secure its first win ever over the Lions – which happened just last year.
But until Friday, the Eagles had never won at Hunt Family Stadium. So their 43-27 victory marked a milestone for the defending SPC small-school champions.
“We’ very pleased with the outcome,” said ESD head coach Richard Williams. “Winning for the first time ever here is very exciting for our program.”
ESD started quickly by scoring on its first three possessions to take a 21-0 lead. Seth Washington was accurate from the onset, completing 10 of 15 passes for three first-quarter touchdowns.
Blake Morrison was Washington’s favorite target all night, but especially in the first half, when he caught touchdown passes of 18, 51 and 40 yards. Morrison finished the night with seven catches for 198 yards.
“Our strategy going into the game was to attack through the air,” Williams said. “We were determined to throw the ball, and to throw it early.”
Washington, a junior, executed the game plan effectively, throwing for just under 300 yards and four touchdowns. Along with Morrison, Cameron Pike also had a big night for the Eagles (2-0), catching five passes for 70 yards and a score.
“Morrison and Pike are big targets with very soft hands,” Williams said. “Blake plays basketball, too, so his timing on jump balls and his size puts him at an advantage against smaller defensive backs.”
After the first quarter, St. Mark’s calmed down and actually out-gained the visiting Eagles in total yards for the game. But the Lions (1-1) were hit hard with injuries.
Starting quarterback Matthew Placide left the game early with a hip injury, and backup Hyer Thomas, who filled in effectively with 164 passing yards and two scores, was also injured in the third quarter.
Sophomore Canyon Kyle replaced Thomas and provided a spark for the Lions, throwing for 161 yards and another two scores. Kyle connected with Zachery Houllion for a 62-yard touchdown pass early in the fourth quarter. Late in the game, a scrambling Kyle found William Caldwell in the end zone from 13 yards out.
“Injuries and turnovers didn’t help our cause,” said St. Mark’s head coach Bart Epperson. “But we played hard.”
Caldwell led all receivers with 11 receptions for 211 yards and three touchdowns.
Other results this week:
Plano East 57, Jesuit 42
After a shutout in its season opener, the Jesuit defense allowed 578 yards and eight touchdowns. Miklo Smalls threw for three touchdowns and ran for 196 yards and two scores for the Panthers (2-0). However, the Rangers (1-1) kept it close with some fireworks of their own, as Adam Holtz rushed for 179 yards and a score and Jacob Palisch caught a touchdown pass from Rusty Landon on a trick play.
North Garland 38, W.T. White 37
The Colonels (1-1) snapped a 28-game losing streak by rallying from a 16-point deficit in the final seven minutes, including a 34-yard field goal as time expired, to stun the Longhorns (1-1). Daniel Joof rushed for 132 yards and two touchdowns for WTW, which led 21-0 in the first quarter and 37-21 midway through the fourth. Jamar Braziel caught two long scoring passes for North Garland.
Lincoln 47, Hillcrest 16
After trailing in the first half, the Tigers (1-1) scored 35 unanswered points to pull away from the Panthers (0-2). Tyler Wade and Diego Cera each caught touchdown passes from Brian Clifton as Hillcrest took a 16-12 lead at halftime. But Lincoln rallied behind Keiontay Coleman, who threw three touchdown passes and ran for a score. Lamarsay Austin added a pair of touchdowns.
Thomas Jefferson 53, FW Diamond Hill-Jarvis 0
No pass completions? No problem for the Patriots (2-0), who won consecutive games for the first time in more than a decade. Kevon Davis rushed for 245 yards and four touchdowns, while Damian Calhoun added 93 yards and three scores. TJ had 460 total yards on the ground and averaged almost 13 yards per carry. Meanwhile, the Eagles (0-2) threw four interceptions and lost their 49th straight game.
FW All Saints 49, Trinity Christian 33
The Trojans (0-1) had plenty of offensive firepower in their debut for new coach Mark Howard, but couldn’t stop Turner Corbett, who rushed for five touchdowns for the Saints (1-1). Parker Oliver caught six passes for 158 yards and an 80-yard touchdown for TCA, while Cody Henson rushed for 132 yards. New quarterback Blake Hinton tallied 254 yards passing and ran for two scores.