Spartans dominate Walker in shutout

Peter Silas Pasqua
East Ascension’s Avery Williams is stopped just shy of the pylon by Walker’s David Zachery in the first half Friday night. Williams rushed for a game-high 67-yards on nine attempts and scored two touchdowns in the Spartan’s 37-0 victory.

East Ascension scored at will on way to a 37-0 homecoming victory over Walker Friday night at Spartan Stadium.

All of the Spartans’ points came in the first half and East Ascension’s defense limited Walker to just 64 yards of total offense.

“We felt like it was important for us to score some points to give our kids confidence,” East Ascension head coach John Lambert said. 

“We wanted to come out and simply execute and come off the football. Our defense is strong. They all have been there and they all have meshed well and we are playing good football now.”

Sophomore quarterback Emerson Foster, starting in his first game, completed all six of his passes for 82 yards and two touchdowns. 

Foster replaces senior Adam Trahan, who received a concussion a week earlier and is under the advice of doctors to not play football anymore, Lambert said.

“Emerson is our starting quarterback and we tried to make the passing game at least in his first week comfortable,” Lambert said. “It was simple passes and they were all pretty short with the 

exception of the fade pass. Next week, it is certainly going to change.

“It was the middle of homecoming week and it was an emotional week  for all of us to lose Trahan but in the middle of all those distractions, (Emerson) got his head together and concentrated. It 

just shows the possibilities that he has.”

Blake Hill dropped Taylor Daniel for a 5-yard loss on the opening possession and East Ascension capped the ensuing 7-play, 48-yard drive when Avery William’s hit pay dirt from 9-yards after Matt  Richard returned the punt 24 yards. Brandon Ruiz’s kick gave the Spartans a 7-0 lead with 3:56 left in the first quarter.

Williams had runs of 15 and 14 yards on the possession.

East Ascension quickly went back to work on their next possession  when Foster connected with Nathan Ray on a 20-yard fade pass into the end zone to cap a 5-play, 34-yard drive. Ruiz’s kick gave East Ascension a 14-0 lead with 10:54 left in the second quarter. Foster hit Justin Pelle for 12-yards on third down to keep the drive alive. Following another three-and-out by Walker, Richard returned the punt  48 yards for a touchdown. Ruiz’s kick made it 21-0 with 9:06 left in 

the half.

The Spartans quickly got the ball back and Foster didn’t hesitate rolling right before throwing a screen to Richard who raced 32 yards into the end zone to make it 28-0 with 6:49 left in the quarter after Ruiz’s kick.

“We throw that screen and there was one guy that wasn’t blocked but Matt made that kid miss a tackle giving him an opportunity to score,” Lambert said. “That is why I stuck him in that possession. He puts it in the end zone. He is just a good athlete.”

A high snap while attempting to punt on Walker’s next possession resulted in a safety to make it 30-0 with 4:07 left in the half.

The final points in the Spartans scoring surplus came when Williams  capped the ensuing seven-play, 48-yard drive with a 2-yard plunge to pay-dirt. Williams kick started the drive with a 16-yard run before Darrell Spears’ 10-yard gain set up the score. Ruiz’s kick  reflected the final tally with 33 seconds remaining in the first half.

Foster was sacked by Dakota Cifreo for a 10-yard loss on the opening possession of the second half but neither team was able to sustain a  drive or cross midfield in the third quarter.

East Ascension drove to the Walker 41 in the fourth quarter behind freshmen running back JaMarkus Jarvis’ 11-yard run and freshman quarterback Chase Rivet’s 20-yard gain.

“It was a big crowd and the lights were on,” Lambert said. “We were able to get some young guys in there for experience in the second half.”

Walker crossed midfield on the ensuing possession but never threatened.

Williams led all rushers with 67 yards on nine attempts.

East Ascension opens District 5-5A play next week at Dutchtown.

East Ascension’s Matt Richard stretches the ball across the goal line on a 48-yard punt return in the second quarter of the Spartans’ 37-0 victory over Walker Friday night.