Despite the loss, Mount Paran coach Mitch Jordan was pleased with his team's performance this season.
"I'm proud of the coaches," Jordan said. "I'm so proud of the kids. We got a great senior class."
He was particularly proud of how far his team exceeded expectations.
"Most people had us picked fifth or sixth in the region, and we had a chance to play for our first region championship, showing these kids that we can play with any team in the state," Jordan said. "I just couldn't be happier for this group of kids."
The Chargers (10-1) were without star halfback Keyonte Green, who is still nursing a groin injury. Etheridge and John Tatum gashed the Eagles defense all night, combining for 232 of the Chargers' 238 yardson the ground.
Etheridge had three scores on 121 yards on just 10 carries with 14 yards receiving. He set the tone early with a 74-yard dash for the end zone on the Chargers first play from scrimmage. The next two scores were his as well, getting the score up to 21-0 with 4:28 in the third quarter.
Mount Paran (7-4) was not about to roll over, and fullback Carter McKinnon proved it when he mowed down three Chargers on his way to a 52-yard score, getting the Eagles on the board with 3:31 in the third.
McKinnon carried the ball 25 times for Mount Paran.
Jordan was pleased with McKinnon's blue-collar performance.
"He's (McKinnon) been banged up," Jordan said. "He's just naturally talented, and he works hard."
The Eagles then forced a turnover on downs and chewed up nearly half of the fourth quarter with their ensuing 16-play drive. Eagle signal-caller Ian Berryman dropped back on fourth and eight and found Armani Moore in the back right corner of the end zone to bring the score to 21-14 in favor of Eagle's Landing Christian.
But Tatum was ready to do his part, and the bruising back would put the nail in the Eagle coffin with a 12-yard scamper to run the score to 28-14 with just over 5 minutes in the game.
The two-headed monster of Etheridge and Tatum ran the clock almost completely out after the Eagles' ensuing turnover on downs.
"We just couldn't stop the (John) Tatum kid," Jordan said. "He's a hard-nosed running back."