Spartans survive scare from Thibodaux, earn first victory
The East Ascension Spartans were able to even their record at 1-1 last Friday night with a 21-18 home win over Thibodaux that almost duplicated LSU's 21-19 victory over Mississippi State the next day.
After leading 21-10 late, Thibodaux stormed back and cut the deficit to 21-18.
With time waning, their offense kept attacking as they pushed the ball deep into Spartan territory.
It set up a potential game-winning 27-yard field goal, but to the jubilation of East Ascension, it went wide right, allowing them to escape with their first win of the season.
The Spartans came into their home opener desperately seeking positives after an ugly 23-0 loss to Denham Springs in week one.
Early on, the offense was once again stuck in neutral as both teams failed to score.
The fireworks didn't start to fly until the second quarter when East Ascension senior quarterback Kyran Irvin broke loose on a 55-yard run.
The scamper set up a five-yard score by senior running back Josh Bates to give the Spartans a 7-3 lead.
Irwin and the Spartan offense kept rolling on their next possession.
He sprinted 31 yards to the Thibodaux 10-yard line, and then completed the drive with a 10-yard touchdown run to extend the East Ascension lead.
With the Spartan deficit cut down to 14-10 in the third quarter, Irwin went right back on the attack.
Once again, he scored on the ground as he broke loose on a 32-yard touchdown run on an option-keeper. It extended the East Ascension lead to 21-10.
With the double-digit advantage and with the fourth quarter winding down, the game looked to be well in hand, but Thibodaux made one final push.
With just 4:09 remaining in the game, running back Amik Robertson exploded for a 45-yard touchdown. The successful ensuing two-point try cut the Spartan lead to 21-18.
The Tigers were then down to their final drive.
They stayed alive by converting a crucial fourth-and-10, and then reached the Spartan 30-yard line after quarterback Trey LeBlanc hit Rochon Washington.
Thibodaux eventually reached the East Ascension 10--setting up a potential 27-yard game winner.
However, kicker Brandon Cone hooked it wide right with just seven seconds remaining in the game--allowing the Spartans to ice away the hard-fought victory.
The Tigers were led by Robertson as he accumulated 152 total yards.
Irvin was the hero for the Spartans.
In addition to coming through with what turned out to be the winning score, he rushed for 189 yards and two touchdowns.
Irwin had to carry the load for the East Ascension offense because of the Tigers' success shutting down Bates. Bates was held to just 42 yards and a score on 15 carries.
The non-district schedule just continues to get tougher for the Spartans.
This Friday night, they'll host fourth-ranked Zachary, a team led by last year's 5A Offensive MVP, quarterback Lindsey Scott, Jr.
Before the game, East Ascension will be celebrating its 50th year of existence. Their first ever football team will be honored.
In addition to that celebration, Luke Marchand will be inducted into the school's Wall of Fame, and Lynnika Pitts, Joe Clement and Ronnie Clement will be inducted into their Hall of Fame.