The Indians rolled up 420 rushing yards to outlast the Trojans 42-28 at Walter Cantrell Field late Friday – and early Saturday -- in the second game of the “Battle of I-75.”
Taj Griffin led the way with 154 yards on 22 carries and Ty Clemons finished with with 128 yards on 13 carries.
With the game tied at 21-all after two quarters, the normal 20-minute halftime became roughly 40 minutes when the the stadium lights went out. The lights were on a timer that was set to go off at midnight.
When the lights came back on, McEachern (2-0) came out running the read option with Clemons getting carries of 9, 14 and 15 yards before scrambling 18-yards for a touchdown.
McEachern never relinquished the lead, and added to it, when Ryan Sherman scored on a 12-yard burst.
“There were a lot of good plays (in the second half) and we did a lot of good things,” McEachern coach Kyle Hockman said. “The offensive line gave (our backs) a lot of space.”
They also got help from McEachern’s defense. In the third quarter, the Indians held the Trojans to just six snaps for minus-8 yards.
Lassiter (0-1) seized the fourth quarter momentum when it blocked a McEachern field goal attempt and Derek Lloyd recovered on the Trojans’ 45.
Lassiter would go on to score on a 13-yard run by backup quarterback Russell Aarons to cut the McEachern lead to 35-28 with 8:43 left to play.
But McEachern responded when Alizee Chubbs scored on the next drive from four yards out.
“Lassiter’s a tough team and very scrappy,” Hockman said. “They’ll be one of the tougher teams we play.”
McEachern led by two touchdowns early in the second quarter before Lassiter climbed its way back into the game.
The Lassiter rally started with less than 7 minutes left to play in the half when Clemons threw an interception to Clay Roelle while trying to make a play under pressure. The Trojans made him pay immediately when Anderson threw a 17-yard screen pass to Lane Jackman for a touchdown.
After Corey John sacked Clemons to force a fourth down and make McEachern punt on the next possesion, Lassiter drove 83 yards to tie the game on 11 plays -- all on the ground -- when Corey John scored on a 2-yard run with 7 seconds left.
Clemons and McEachern were cruising before he threw the interception.
McEachern had just scored back-to-back touchdowns, the second coming on a 42-yard scramble by Clemons to give the Indians a 21-7 cushion in the opening minute of the second quarter.
McEachern’s scored on its opening drive on a Clemons 17-yard pass to Artise Clarke.
Lassiter answered by converting on fourth-and-8 when Anderson connected to Quincy Pursue for a 22-yard gain, before Anderson scored from three yards out two plays later.