A pair of seniors turned Senior Night into a banner night for the South Pointe Stallions.
Devin Pearson and C.J. Pendergrass combined for 237 rushing yards and three touchdowns to propel the Stallions to a 35-13 win against the upset-minded Lancaster Bruins at District Three South Stadium on Friday.
No. 5 South Pointe (10-1, 6-1) clinched the Class 4A-Region 3 championship.
Im happy for our kids to get this win and an outright region championship, South Pointe coach Strait Herron said. Thats exactly what it is.
The Stallions survived arguably the states toughest region, which featured No. 6 Northwestern and No. 9 York teams Herron knows might pop up again.
Not that were scared of them, Herron said. Its just that personally, I like to prepare for different opponents. But well prepare for whoever we face. Its what we do.
Lancaster (2-9, 1-6) ran nine plays in goal-to-go territory in the first quarter. The Stallions held on the first drive, but a 42-yard punt return by Will Jackson set the Bruins up at the South Pointe 8-yard line on their second possession.
On fourth-and-goal from the 13-yard line, Kaderrious Jackson zipped a pass through two defenders to Immanuel Ishmael for a touchdown. The Bruins led 7-0 after one period.
South Pointe answered with a 10-play touchdown drive, capped by a 17-yard run by Josh Brice on the second play of the second quarter. Lancaster threatened to regain the lead twice, but sacks by Zeek Rodney and Matt Newman stalled those drives and kept the score deadlocked at halftime.
The Bruins didnt commit a turnover or penalty in the first half.
In light of the season weve had, we gave everything we could, Lancaster coach Benny McMurray said. Our youth was a factor, but tonight our youth played like veterans.
Pearson opened the second half with a 37-yard scramble and scored two plays later from 23 yards out to give the Stallions a 14-7 lead. Lancaster responded in four plays with a three-yard touchdown by Jackson. The Bruins missed the extra point, however, and still trailed 14-13.
Cody Blake returned the ensuing kickoff to the Bruins 34 yard line. Pendergrass scored on a draw on the next play to give South Pointe a 21-13 advantage, which held through three quarters.
We wore their defense down and wanted to pick up the tempo, Pendergrass said. We just had to play more physical.
Pearson tacked on a one-yard touchdown with 11:35 left for a two-score lead. A 64-yard interception return for a score at the 7:16 mark by senior Serhenry Miller served as the backbreaker. The Class 4A playoffs start next Friday.
This gives us confidence, Pendergrass said. We have one thing in mind right now, and thats December.
South Pointe 35, Lancaster 13
L-Kaderrious Jackson 13 pass to Immanuel Ishmael (Quinshan Evans kick)
SP-Josh Brice 17 run (Logan Ard kick)
SP-Devin Pearson 23 run (Ard kick)
L-Jackson 3 run (Evans kick)
SP-C.J. Pendergrass 34 run (Ard kick)
SP-Pearson 1 run (Ard kick)
SP-Serhenry Miller 64 interception return (Ard kick)
RUSHING LANCASTER: Jackson 20-49, Dreshun Stewart 12-36, Marqi Stanback 3-7, Keendarius Truesdale 5-0, Jay Hood 1-0. SOUTH POINTE: Pearson 16-119, Pendergrass 17-118, Brice 4-38, Vinny Emmanuele 2-0.
PASSING LANCASTER: Jackson 7-21-1, 81 yards, Truesdale 0-1-0, 0 yards. SOUTH POINTE: Pearson 9-20-1, 86 yards, Ta Blake 1-1-0, 0 yards.
RECEIVING LANCASTER: Ishmael 2-31, C.D. Pelham 3-30, Monteco Johnson 1-13, Tywon Anthony 1-7. SOUTH POINTE: DeShawn Davis 4-39, P.J. Heath 4-38, Trinity Shannon 1-9, JaNoris Chisholm 1-0.
RECORDS: Lancaster 2-9, 1-6, South Pointe 10-1, 6-1.